If you’re a fan of seafood and spicy flavors, Saigon Prawn Curry with Basil is a dish that you must try. This flavorful Vietnamese curry combines succulent prawns with aromatic spices and fragrant basil leaves, creating a burst of flavors in every bite.
The curry itself is made with a combination of ingredients including coconut milk, lemongrass, ginger, garlic, and red chili, giving it a rich and creamy texture with a hint of heat. The prawns are cooked in this luscious curry sauce until they become tender and infused with all the flavors.
One of the highlights of this dish is the fresh basil leaves that are added towards the end of the cooking process. The basil leaves impart a unique and refreshing taste to the curry, complementing the spiciness and adding a touch of herbal goodness.
History and Origins
The dish has its origins in the southern part of Vietnam, particularly in the city of Saigon, which is now known as Ho Chi Minh City. Saigon prawn curry with basil is a combination of Vietnamese and Thai flavors, as the region has been influenced by both cultures throughout its history. The dish typically includes fresh prawns, coconut milk, curry paste, and a variety of herbs and spices, including basil.
The use of prawns in this dish is a nod to the abundance of seafood in the coastal regions of Vietnam. Prawns are a popular ingredient in Vietnamese cuisine, and they add a rich and savory flavor to the curry. The curry paste is made from a blend of spices and herbs, including lemongrass, garlic, ginger, and chili. These ingredients give the dish its distinctive and aromatic flavor.
Overall, the Saigon prawn curry with basil is a delicious and flavorful dish that showcases the unique food culture of Vietnam. Its combination of fresh prawns, coconut milk, and aromatic herbs and spices make it a standout dish in Vietnamese cuisine.
Ingredients and Preparation
To make Saigon Prawn Curry with Basil, you will need a variety of ingredients. The main components include prawns, curry paste, coconut milk, fish sauce, lime, basil, and various spices. You can find these ingredients at your local grocery store or specialty Asian markets.
- 400 grams of prawns, peeled and deveined
- 2 tablespoons of curry paste
- 1 can of coconut milk (400 ml)
- 2 tablespoons of fish sauce
- 1 lime, juiced
- A handful of fresh basil leaves
- 1 teaspoon of sugar
- 1 red chili, sliced (optional for added spice)
- Salt and pepper to taste
To prepare the Saigon Prawn Curry with Basil, begin by heating some oil in a large pan over medium heat. Add the curry paste to the pan and cook for a minute until fragrant. Then, pour in the coconut milk and bring it to a simmer.
- Add the prawns to the pan and cook them for about 3-4 minutes, or until they turn pink and are cooked through. Make sure not to overcook them to maintain their tenderness.
- Next, stir in the fish sauce, lime juice, sugar, and a pinch of salt and pepper. Adjust the seasonings to your taste.
- Finally, add the basil leaves and sliced red chili if desired, and gently stir them into the curry. Allow the curry to simmer for another minute to let all the flavors meld together.
Once the prawns are cooked and the curry is well-flavored, your Saigon Prawn Curry with Basil is ready to be served! Garnish it with some additional basil leaves and serve it hot with steamed rice or crusty bread for a delicious and satisfying meal.
Serving and Pairing Suggestions
1. Rice: Pair the curry with steamed jasmine rice or basmati rice. The fluffy rice will help balance out the flavors and provide a neutral base for the curry.
2. Naan Bread: Another option is to serve the curry with warm, freshly baked naan bread. The soft and chewy texture of naan complements the bold flavors of the curry.
3. Fresh Herbs: Garnish the curry with fresh basil leaves or cilantro for added freshness and aroma. These herbs will enhance the Thai flavors and provide a vibrant touch to the dish.
4. Coconut Milk: For those who prefer a creamier texture, you can add a splash of coconut milk to the curry. This will add richness and depth to the flavor profile, balancing out the spiciness.
5. Side Vegetable Dish: Serve the curry with a side dish of stir-fried vegetables, such as bell peppers, snow peas, or broccoli. This will provide a contrasting texture and add more nutritional value to the meal.
|Steamed jasmine rice or basmati rice||1 cup|
|Naan bread||2 pieces|
|Fresh basil leaves or cilantro||A handful|
|Coconut milk||1/4 cup|
|Stir-fried vegetables||1 cup|