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coconut shrimp(isso)curry(Sri Lankan).

coconut shrimp curry(Sri Lankan).

 

Fresh prawns/shrimp cooked in Sri Lankan spices and mixed in with fine shredded coconut.

It’s an example of simple ingredients coming together to make your taste buds tingle with curry flavors and coconut.

 

Fresh prawns and shredded coconut

for the best shrimp curry out there!

 

Here’s a prawn/shrimp curry which combines two favorite Sri Lankan dishes, giving you a one of a kind seafood dish.

 

Prawn curry and pol sambol…

Have you ever had a Sri Lankan shrimp curry where you add a few spoons of pol sambol because you can’t resist this combo?

And then you either add some rice or use a slice of crusty bread to soak the gravy to finish it off?

 

Well, this shrimp(prawn)curry gives you a chance to use both these combinations in a one-pot prawn coconut curry.

 

But if you expect the same flavors of mixing prawns and pol sambol then you are in for a surprise because this coconut prawn/shrimp curry is much more than two ingredients coming together.

It’s a lot of Sri Lankan spices, a slow-simmered gravy that makes a difference.

 

 coconut-shrimp curry ina clay pot with aromatic flavors from the spice and coconut.

 

Thank you note to my readers.

 

coconut shrimp curry, a seafood curry cooked in clay pot with all the sri lankan favors.

 

I’m using grated(scraped) coconut to give the shrimp curry added texture and taste. mind you, these are not coconut chips.

You’ll be doing a bit of slow roasting with the scraped coconut and spices to add more flavor.

 

Can I scrape my own coconut?

 

Cooking with either coconut milk or scraped coconut is a part of Sri Lankan cooking so we have the option of either scraping our own coconut or buy bags of frozen or freshly scraped coconut which are now available in some shops.

But you can scrape your own coconut if you have a coconut scraper.

 

What tool can I use to scrape coconut?

 

So if you do use scraped coconut or even coconut milk, the question is choosing the right coconut scraper.

 

If you are going to buy a coconut scraper then you should be aware that there are some good ones and quite a few bad ones out there.

 

You have to choose what suits your lifestyle.

Whether you want a handheld version or a scraper that can be fixed to your table is up to you but choosing one that serves the purpose without the hassle, is one of the things you should keep in mind while you make your choice.

 

Choosing the right coconut scraper.

Let me help you choose the best coconut scraper by writing a few tips on how to choose one that suits your apartment or home.

 

Choosing a coconut scraper in Sri Lanka is not an issue because although we do get an electrical coconut scraper(which is bulky and expensive), the common variety which takes the form of a stool with a scraper, are available in most places and they are quite inexpensive.

 

But if you are living elsewhere then you need to be aware of the types of coconut scraper available and make the best choice.

 

Types of coconut scrapers.

There are two types,

1/ you have the manual, fixed to a tabletop coconut scraper.

2/you have the electric coconut scraper.

 

Whichever you choose, keep in mind, you will be using both hands,

One to hold the coconut, the other to either maneuver the coconut, hold or move the handle of the scraper to rotate the blade.

 

So think about a firm base or tabletop where you can fix the coconut scraper which won’t be a nuisance to anyone and easy to clean.

 

Choose a coconut scraper that is hardy, by this I mean,

When you are scraping the coconut scraper should hold firm, it should not shake or come off the base attached to the table.

 

Anything that looks flimsy, like a whisk or has a rubber suctions on the bottom is not going to serve your purpose.

 

Oh, here’s a heads up, it’s a lot of hard work and if you are scraping coconut for the first time, there’s a possibility you might end up scraping your palm so start slow until you have a handle on things.

 

 

Is this shrimp/prawn curry spicy?

 

Hardly, my kids were able to enjoy without complaining that it was spicy. I think the scraped coconut in the curry absorbs most of the spiciness.

 

But if you find yourself in my situation(a husband who’s able to a level spicy food that leaves you speechless)then do what I do, just keep some raw green chillies for him/her to munch on.

 

But having made this dish for my family first, I know the kids are going to love it.

 

Thank you note to my readers.

Save the recipe to your favorite Pinterest board!

Sri Lankan coconut-shrimp curry- delicious, tender prawns cooked to perfection in Sri Lankan spices and grated coconut to give extra flavor. It's an example of simple ingredients coming together to make your taste buds tingle.

 

Utensils and appliances needed.

You will need a large pan to cook the prawns and a few bowls to hold them as you wash and marinate them.

 

Can I cook the prawns shell-off?

 

The short answer would be yes, but make sure you have the coconut-based gravy in the right consistency before you add them.

Before you add the shrimp make sure the gravy thick before adding the prawns(without the shell)as they only need 15-20 minutes of cooking time.

 

Beginner’s tips for the shrimp curry.

 

  • Have all the ingredients ready before you begin cooking.

 

  • I would suggest washing, cleaning, removing the heads and deveining of the prawns be done an hour earlier unless you are only cooking a small number of prawns(250g-500g). 

 

  • Let me be honest with you, one of the most tedious and tiring processes FOR ME when making any kind of prawn dish is deveining and cleaning the prawns because I usually have to do this for a large number of prawns. This can be tiring so what I do is tackle the cleaning one or two hours before cooking the prawns.

 

  • This allows me time to really concentrate on flavors and spices so I wouldn’t be in a rush to cook a meal but rather enjoy creating the dish.

 

  • Spend a good amount of time creating the coconut-gravy, make sure you taste and have all flavors in the curry as it should be, then add the prawns, keep in mind the prawns cook fast so once you add the prawns be there to remove the pan as soon as the color of the prawns change and turn firm.

 

  • Keep the fire low-medium, do not rush the cooking process.

 

  • Follow the recipe but be prepared to add a little more of the spices to suit your taste buds.

 

  • There’s an easy way to devein the prawn, just insert a toothpick point between the shell gaps(closer to the shrimp tail or middle)and pull out the vein.

 

Can I use dessicated coconut? 

 

If you are unable to find freshly grated coconut then yes but fresh, scraped coconut is always the best.

 

 

Can I use frozen shrimp or prawns?

 

Yes, please refer to notes above where I explain how to cook prawns with the shell-off.

 

More shrimp/prawn recipes!

 

Jaffna curry powder prawn curry.

Spicy black pepper dry prawn curry

How to make crunchy prawn head fries.

Caramelized 20  minute garlic prawn stir fry.

 

Sri Lankan coconut-shrimp(isso)curry.

 

Please make sure to read the recipe instructions carefully to avoid mistakes.

Ingredients

 

Ingredients mentioned below use standard measuring cups and spoons.

3-4 tablespoons of oil

A sprig of curry leaves(6-8)

1 tablespoon of minced ginger(1-inch piece of ginger)

1 tablespoon of minced garlic(4 cloves of garlic)

1 piece of Cinnamon(1 inch long)

1 large Onion sliced fine

2 green chillies split into two

1 medium-sized tomato chopped

1/2 a teaspoon of Turmeric powder

1 tablespoon of red Chilli powder(if you feel this is too much for you reduce by half but the freshly grated coconut helps to reduce most of the heat of a tablespoon of chilli powder)

1/2 a teaspoon of pepper powder

1 tablespoon of coriander powder

1 teaspoon of Jaffna curry powder(this is a totally optional ingredient for you but I do tend to add it to most of my curries)

1/2 a teaspoon of tamarind paste(if you are using the ones with the seeds, soak the 1 tablespoon of tamarind in 1/4 of a cup of water for 3-5 minutes, remove seeds and use this liquid.

1/2 a cup of freshly grated coconut

Salt to season

1/4 cup thick coconut milk

700g of cleaned, deveined prawns(see notes if you are using frozen prawns or you decide to cook the prawns without the skin).

 

Method

Clean, remove heads, devein the prawns, drain and place them, season with salt and set aside.

Place a pan over medium heat and pour in the oil, leave it to heat for a few seconds and add curry leaves, ginger, garlic paste, cinnamon and sauté the ingredients for 20-30 seconds.

Add the green chillies, onions, tomato and cook for 3-4 minutes over reduced heat.

Add turmeric, chilli, pepper, coriander, Jaffna curry powder(optional), continue cooking over low heat while making the paste for the prawn curry (3-4 minutes).

Add the tamarind paste and then the grated coconut, combine all ingredients while seasoning with salt. Cook for a few minutes, until the grated coconut turns dark in color, continue cooking over low heat to avoid the spice paste or coconut burning (5-7 minutes).

Pour in the coconut milk and let the gravy cook, thicken and change color (8-10 minutes).

 

Once the gravy reaches its correct consistency, drain the prawns of any excess water and add them to the gravy, cover and slow simmer for 10-15 minutes. Just until prawns are cooked through, season with salt if necessary.

 

Using frozen prawns for the recipe.

If you are using frozen prawns or prawns with their shell removed then reduce the cooking time to under 10 minutes.

Serve warm with your favorite rice and curry dishes.        

 

Yield: 5

COCONUT-SHRIMP(ISSO)CURRY(SRI LANKAN).

coconut-shrimp (isso curry) . a sri lankan recipe.
coconut-shrimp curry(Sri Lankan).

 

Fresh prawns/shrimp cooked in Sri Lankan spices and mixed in with finely shredded coconut.

Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes

Instructions

    Clean, remove heads, devein the prawns, drain and place them, season with salt and set aside.

    Place a pan over medium heat and pour in the oil, leave it to heat for a few seconds and add curry leaves, ginger, garlic paste, cinnamon and sauté the ingredients for 20-30 seconds.

    Add the green chillies, onions, tomato and cook for 3-4 minutes over reduced heat.

    Add turmeric, chilli, pepper, coriander, Jaffna curry powder(optional), continue cooking over low heat while making the paste for the prawn curry (3-4 minutes).

    Add the tamarind paste and then the grated coconut, combine all ingredients while seasoning with salt. Cook for a few minutes, until the grated coconut turns dark in color, continue cooking over low heat to avoid the spice paste or coconut burning (5-7 minutes).

    Pour in the coconut milk and let the gravy cook, thicken and change color (8-10 minutes).

     

    Once the gravy reaches its correct consistency, drain the prawns of any excess water and add them to the gravy, cover and slow simmer for 10-15 minutes. Just until prawns are cooked through, season with salt if necessary.

    Using frozen prawns for the recipe.

    If you are using frozen prawns or prawns with their shell removed then reduce the cooking time to under 10 minutes.

    Serve warm with your favorite rice and curry dishes.    

    Made this recipe?

    Please don’t forget to rate the recipe on the recipe card so other readers find it helpful and show me your recipe by tagging me #islandsmile178 on Instagram.

    Nutrition Information:

    Yield:

    5

    Serving Size:

    1

    Amount Per Serving: Calories: 407Total Fat: 21gSaturated Fat: 8gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 12gCholesterol: 296mgSodium: 1510mgCarbohydrates: 20gFiber: 4gSugar: 10gProtein: 34g
    Each recipe on this blog has been written with great care and love to the best of my ability with you in mind.
    It’s free and on the blog, for you to try anytime.

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    Sara

    Friday 17th of April 2020

    Hi, this curry looks delicious! Iā€™m wondering if I can make the sauce earlier and freeze it. And then later on when I need it I just defrost and add the prawns. Will the flavour and consistency be the same?

    jehan

    Friday 17th of April 2020

    Hi Sara, Regarding freezing the curry, I'm afraid I can't tell you if the taste would change but if you are only freezing for a day or two I don't think there would be a problem though I have not done this myself. But if you are going to freeze the curry sauce, make sure it's completely cool(touch the bottom of the container and use an airtight container to freeze it. For this curry, I have used scraped coconut at the last minute just before adding the prawns, this means it isn't blended into the curry to make the gravy. Add the scraped coconut and the prawns after you defrost the gravy to get the same texture and taste. Hope this helps, let me know how it goes. Regards J

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