Prawns in Rice Dough with Pumpkin-Curry Sauce
Helmut Österreicher coats large prawns in rice dough, or batter, which is leavened with yeast and allowed to rise. The prawns are deep-fried, then served atop sauteed red pepper dice with a pumpkin-curry sauce.
- Basmati (risotto) rice - 1/2 cup
- Chicken Stock (see Basics) - 3/4 cup
- Eggs - 3
- Active Dried Yeast - 1 packet
- Salt and freshly ground pepper
- Prawns - 12
- Flour - 1 tablespoon
- Canola oil - for deep-fat frying
- Shallots - 2, minced
- Pumpkin or winter squash - 3/4 pound, peeled and finely diced
- Unsalted Butter - 4 tablespoons
- Apple Juice - 1 cup
- Fish stock (see Basics) or clam juice or chicken stock - 1 cup
- Pinch of saffron
- Bay Leaf - 1
- Curry - 1 teaspoon
- Sour Cream - 3 tablespoons
- Salt to taste
- Unsalted Butter - 3 tablespoons
- Leek - 1/2, blanched and diced
- Red Bell Peppers - 2, peeled, seeded, deribbed, and diced
To prepare the prawns: Grind the rice very fine in a coffee grinder and put into a medium bowl. Add the chicken stock and soak for 30 minutes. Add the eggs and yeast, mix briefly to blend, and season with salt and pepper. Let the batter rise in a warm place for 20 minutes. Punch down with your fist and let rise again for 20 minutes.
To prepare the sauce: Heat the butter over medium-low heat and saute the shallots and diced pumpkin until softened. Do not brown. Add the apple juice and stock and simmer for 10 minutes. Add the saffron, bay leaf, and curry and cook 10 more minutes. Blend with a hand blender or in a blender and strain through a fine-meshed sieve. Stir in the sour cream and season to taste with salt and pepper. Keep warm.
To finish the prawns: Slice the prawns lengthwise and clean. Season with salt and pepper and coat with flour. Heat the oil to 370 F in a deep-fryer or deep saucepan. Swirl the prawns in the rice batter and gently slip into the hot oil, a few at a time. Fry until the prawns rise to the top and turn golden; remove with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towels. Let the oil return to temperature between each batch.
To prepare the garnishes: Heat the butter in a medium saute pan or skillet over medium heat and saute the red peppers and leeks for 3 minutes, until softened. Season with salt.
To serve: Spread sauteed peppers and leeks on four warmed serving plates. Place three prawns on each plate on top of the peppers and leeks. Whisk the sauce vigorously to blend again and spoon sauce onto the plates.