Exploring the Exquisite: Sri Owen’s Prawns in Rich Coconut Sauce (Sambal Goreng Udang)

In the world of culinary delights, few dishes can transport you to the vibrant streets of Indonesia, like Sri Owen’s Prawns in Rich Coconut Sauce, also known as Sambal Goreng Udang. This exquisite recipe is a fusion of flavors, combining the freshness of prawns with the creaminess of coconut milk and the boldness of Indonesian spices. Let’s delve into the intricacies of this dish and learn how to recreate its magic in your kitchen.

The Origins of Sambal Goreng Udang

Sambal Goreng Udang originates from Indonesia, a country renowned for its diverse and flavorful cuisine. Sri Owen, a prominent Indonesian culinary expert, has perfected this dish, infusing it with her expertise and passion for traditional Indonesian cooking. Sambal Goreng Udang is a beloved dish across the Indonesian archipelago, cherished for its rich taste and aromatic spices.


For the Sambal Paste:

  • 5-6 red chilies (adjust according to spice preference)
  • Four shallots, roughly chopped
  • Three cloves of garlic
  • 1-inch piece of fresh ginger peeled and sliced
  • One teaspoon of shrimp paste (terasi)
  • One teaspoon of tamarind paste
  • One teaspoon of palm sugar
  • Salt to taste

For the Coconut Sauce:

  • 400ml of coconut milk
  • One lemongrass stalk, bruised
  • Two kaffir lime leaves
  • One tablespoon of tamarind paste
  • One teaspoon of palm sugar
  • Salt to taste

For the Prawns:

  • 500g of large prawns, peeled and deveined
  • Two tablespoons of vegetable oil
  • One onion, thinly sliced
  • One red bell pepper, thinly sliced
  • Handful of green beans, trimmed
  • Fresh cilantro leaves for garnish

Cooking Instructions:

  1. Prepare the Sambal Paste: In a mortar and pestle, grind together the red chilies, shallots, garlic, ginger, shrimp paste, tamarind paste, palm sugar, and salt until you have a smooth paste. Alternatively, you can use a food processor for this step.
  2. Make the Coconut Sauce: In a large skillet or wok, heat the coconut milk over medium heat. Add the lemongrass stalk, kaffir lime leaves, tamarind paste, palm sugar, and salt. Stir well and let it simmer gently for about 5 minutes to infuse the flavors. Remove the lemongrass stalk and kaffir lime leaves afterward.
  3. Cook the Prawns: In the same skillet, heat the vegetable oil over medium heat. Add the sliced onion and cook until softened about 2-3 minutes. Then, add the prepared sambal paste and cook for another 2-3 minutes until fragrant.
  4. Add the Prawns and Vegetables: Add the prawns to the skillet and stir well to coat them with the sambal paste. Cook for 2-3 minutes until the prawns turn pink and are cooked through. Then, add the sliced red bell pepper and green beans. Cook for an additional 2-3 minutes until the vegetables are tender yet still crisp.
  5. Final Touches: Taste the sauce and adjust the seasoning if necessary. If you prefer a thicker sauce, you can let it simmer for a few more minutes until it reaches your desired consistency. Once done, remove the skillet from the heat.
  6. Serve: Transfer the prawns in rich coconut sauce to a serving dish. Garnish with fresh cilantro leaves for an added burst of flavor and aroma. Serve hot with steamed rice or crusty bread to soak up the delicious sauce.

Sri Owen’s Prawns in Rich Coconut Sauce (Sambal Goreng Udang) is a testament to Indonesia’s culinary heritage. With its harmonious blend of spices, creamy coconut milk, and succulent prawns, this dish is sure to tantalize your taste buds and leave you craving more.

Whether you’re a seasoned chef or a novice in the kitchen, this recipe offers a delightful culinary adventure that celebrates the flavors of Indonesia. So gather your ingredients, roll up your sleeves, and embark on a gastronomic journey to discover the magic of Sambal Goreng Udang in the comfort of your own home. Bon appétit!

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