Malaysian Tamarind Fried Prawns

Assam prawns is a typical Peranakan dish which is delicious and appetizing. These tamarind prawns are cooked in a sour and sweet sauce until it is reduced to create a caramelized gravy.

5 stars

Preparation 30 mins
Cooking 10 mins


Assam Prawns


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Nutrition per Serving

222 kcal
7 g
9 g
27 g

Assam prawns is one of the many Peranakan dishes I grew up with. Preparing a dish of tamarind prawns could not be any simpler than this. With just some salt, sugar and the core ingredient, tamarind paste, a marvelous dish is created. It is without a doubt that this dish is very appetizing, with the sweetness of the prawns and the sourish taste of the tamarind paste infused together creating an amazing flavour.

Cook prawns with shell on

This recipe has a simple list of ingredients. It is important to keep the shells of the prawns intact when cooking to ensure that the original flavour of the prawns remains. This makes the dish even more delectable when combined with the sweet and sour flavours. For best results, keep the heads of the prawns intact too to absorb the gravy as they cook.

Marinate prawns

It takes at least 30 minutes to marinate the prawns. They can be marinated for up to 2 hours, kept in the refrigerator. Cooking duration however should only take 10 minutes to prevent overcooking the prawns.

Perfect weekday recipe

This is a perfect after work recipe using minimal ingredients and a short preparation time. Stir fry some simple greens to pair them with these succulent assam prawns.


400 g
2 tbsp
tamarind paste
1 tbsp

Steps to Prepare

Malaysian Tamarind Fried Prawns Step 1

Step 1 of 2

    • 400 g prawns
    • 2 tbsp tamarind paste
    • salt
    • sugar

Marinate the prawns with tamarind paste. Add some salt and sugar to taste. If the tamarind paste is too thick, add some water.

Malaysian Tamarind Fried Prawns Step 2

Step 2 of 2

    • 1 tbsp oil

Stir fry the prawns at medium to low heat until the tamarind juice dries up.

Published: September 27, 2012

1 Discussions

Yoon Cheah
4 years ago

Yoon Cheah

I remember this dish well as this was the only way I would eat prawns, with sambal blachan of course! The only deviation is that we shallow fried the prawns first for crispiness of shell and adds frangrance. Very sweet memories, thank you Grace.

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