A friend brought a bag of frozen prawns to our door and requested me to turn it into a marmalade ... sorry ... sweet and sour prawns for a birthday party. Sure thing my dear, I said. I gladly did it even if I didn't exactly have a recipe. (Always loved prawns as with most seafood.) I have one for the pork version but not for this crustacean. So I adapted the sauce from the former (from Huang Su Huei's Chinese Cuisine) and whipped the marinade from another shrimp recipe. It turned out quite good and no bottled sweet and sour sauce, too. :)
Sweet and Sour Prawns
500 g shelled and deveined shrimps or prawns
1 egg white - lightly beaten
1 1/2 Tbsp cooking wine
1/2 tsp sea salt
1 1/2 Tbsp cornstarch
1 Tbsp oil (optional)
1 tsp minced garlic
1 medium onion - chopped into bite-size pieces
1 bell pepper (red or green) - roughly diced
1 x 227 g can of pineapple chunks - drained of juice
6 Tbsp sugar
6 Tbsp water
1/4 cup ketchup
1/4 cup white vinegar
1/4 cup pineapple juice
1 tsp sea salt
2 Tbsp cornstarch
3 Tbsp water
- Dissolve 1/2 tsp salt in the cooking wine. Mix well with the prawns in a bowl. Marinate for about 20-30 minutes.
- Add in the egg white, mix well, then cornstarch, mix well again. If the mixture is really thick like a batter, mix in the 1 Tbsp oil to separate the prawns.
- Drop each piece of prawn in hot oil and deep dry for about 2 minutes. Drain briefly on paper towels. Set aside.
- In a separate bowl, combine the ketchup, pineapple juice, sugar, vinegar, and salt. Stir well to dissolve the sugar and 1 tsp salt. Set aside.
- In another container, mix the thickener by dissolving the cornstarch in the water. Set aside.
- Heat 2 Tbsp cooking oil in a wok. Saute the onion and garlic for about 2 minutes. Make sure not to burn the garlic.
- Stir in the bell pepper and cook for about 1 minute.
- Add in the pineapple chunks, cook for 30 seconds.
- Tip in the ketchup mixture and bring to boil.
- Add in the thickener and bring to boil again.
- Stir in the deep-fried prawns, toss lightly for a few seconds or until prawns are well coated by the sauce. Dish up and serve.