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Mantis Prawns in Spicy Dark Soy Sauce

4.88 stars

Mantis prawns taste superb when cooked in tangy sauce. Hence, they are usually prepared using the delectable and appetizing 'kung pao' or 'kung pou' sauce.

Total Time

Preparation 20 mins
Cooking 20 mins

Dish Type

Side

Alternate Names

Kung Pou Mantis Prawns, Kung Pao Shrimp, 宫保虾姑肉

Cuisines

Malaysian, Singaporean, Thai, Bruneian


Ingredients

Servings:
12 mantis prawns
corn flour
1⁄2 tbsp sesame oil
1 garlic clove(s)
1 cm ginger
3 shallot(s)
2 tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp vinegar
1⁄2 tbsp dark soy sauce
6 tbsp water
2 chilli peppers (dried)
salt
sugar
white pepper
1 scallions
1 1⁄2 tbsp corn flour

Nutrition per Serving

Calories

213 kcal

Carbs

32 g

Fat

5 g

Protein

13 g

Background

Kung pou or kung pao sauce is a soy sauce based gravy which has a tinge of sourness to it. Pairing the kung pou sauce with deep fried mantis prawns, it is one of the more popular dishes In Chinese restaurants found in Singapore and Malaysia.

How to clean or peel mantis prawns?

Cleaning mantis prawns begins with removing its shell. Peeling the shell off can be quite tricky as the meat is tender and the shell comes with sharp spines. The best way to clean mantis prawns is to use a pair of kitchen scissors. Cut sides of the body and then remove the bottom part of the shell. Proceed to cut the head off. Then, lay the mantis prawn on a board/plate to carefully remove the top shell and carefully pull the meat off the tail. The meat from the tail should slide off easily. Rinse the gut clean. Watch the whole process here.

How does mantis prawns taste like?

Mantis prawns taste like a mixture of lobster and crab. The meat is tender and undeniably sweet.

Where can I buy mantis prawns?

They can be found at your local fish market, even in Europe. I bought mine fresh from Germany which is said to come from Italy. Mantis prawns are also found in Spain and used as an ingredient in paella. Otherwise, they may be also sold in the frozen section of the Asian grocer.

Can I use regular prawns or squid?

Of course. If regular prawns or squid are used, they are usually not deep fried. Just directly add it to the pan right after sautéing garlic, ginger and dried chillies. In fact, you can also use chicken, if that's what you prefer. Kung pou gravy is very versatile.


Food Snaps

It's very yummy!

How to Prepare

Mantis Prawns in Spicy Dark Soy Sauce Step 1

Step 1 of 4

  • 12 mantis prawns
  • corn flour

Coat mantis prawns with corn flour and fry until golden brown.

Mantis Prawns in Spicy Dark Soy Sauce Step 2

Step 2 of 4

  • 1⁄2 tbsp sesame oil
  • 1 garlic clove(s)
  • 1 cm ginger
  • 3 shallot(s)
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp vinegar
  • 1⁄2 tbsp dark soy sauce
  • 5 tbsp water
  • 2 chilli peppers (dried)

Heat sesame oil in a wok. Once the oil is heated, add garlic, ginger and dried chillies. Sauté until fragrant. Add shallots along with soy sauce, vinegar, dark sauce and water. Optionally, add some 'Shaoxing' wine.

Mantis Prawns in Spicy Dark Soy Sauce Step 3

Step 3 of 4

  • salt
  • sugar
  • white pepper
  • 1 scallions

Add some salt, white pepper and sugar to taste. Allow gravy to simmer for about 2 minutes. Then, add scallions and cook until soft.

Mantis Prawns in Spicy Dark Soy Sauce Step 4

Step 4 of 4

  • 1 1⁄2 tbsp corn flour
  • 1 tbsp water

To thicken gravy, mix water and cornflour to add into boiling gravy. Turn off the stove. Coat fried mantis prawns with 'kung pou' gravy.

Published: February 21, 2016