Salt and pepper prawns

Serves: 6-8
Preparation time: 40 minutes
Difficulty: moderate


1 1/2 tbsp whole peppercorns (black, white or medley)
1 tbsp sea salt
1kg medium to large prawns
1/3 cup cornflour
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 long green or red chilli, finely sliced
1 spring onion, chopped


  1. To prepare prawns, cut along the back with kitchen shears to de-vein. If you wish, also trim off the legs with shears.  Rinse and pat dry with paper towel.
  2. In a non-stick frying pan over medium low heat, dry roast the whole peppercorns of your choice for 15 minutes, until very fragrant. Stir frequently, adjusting the heat if needed to avoid burning. Remove from pan and set aside to cool completely.
  3. In the same pan, dry roast the salt over medium heat until it turns slightly yellow. Cool and combine it with the peppercorns, using a spice grinder or mortar and pestle to grind the mix to a powder. Mix with the cornflour.
  4. Toss half the prawns in the seasoned cornflour mixture to coat, shaking off excess flour.
  5. Heat half the oil in a heavy based frying pan. Place the coated prawns in the pan a centimetre or two apart to cook, turning after a minute or two, until they are pink on both sides. Drain on a plate lined with paper towel.
  6. Repeat steps 4 and 5 with the second batch of prawns.
  7. Garnish with chilli and spring onion.

Serving suggestion

  • Serve salt and pepper prawns on top of a crisp green salad for a light meal.
  • For a more substantial meal, prepare thin vermicelli noodles as per packet directions, toss with finely julienned carrot, spring onion and red capsicum and chopped coriander and top with salt and pepper prawns and lime wedges.