Black pepper prawns

Ben ODonoghue makes an Asian-inspired recipe of prawns in a spicy black pepper sauce served with rice and lettuce cups
By Ben O'Donoghue
Black pepper prawns
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 4
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Prep Time: 25 minutes
  • Effort: easy


  • steamed rice
  • 1 iceberg lettuce, leaves separated into cups
  • sunflower oil
  • 500 g king prawns, de-veined
  • 10g fresh curry leaves

For the black pepper sauce

  • 50 g butter
  • 1 tsp garlic paste
  • 1 tsp ginger paste
  • 3 white spring onions, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp Korean chilli paste
  • 1 tsp miso paste
  • 1 tbsp cracked black peppercorns
  • 1 tsp oyster sauce
  • 1 tbsp manis ketchup
  • 250 ml chicken stock
  • 1 tbsp cornflour
  • 3 tbsp water

To garnish

  • picked mint leaves
  • picked coriander leaves
  • lime wedges

Tips and Suggestions

Ketchup manis is a thick, sweet, rich, syrupy Indonesian version of soy sauce containing sugar and spices. You can find it in Asian supermarkets


1. Firstly prepare your rice and lettuce cups.

2. Heat half the sunflower oil in a wok over a high heat. Add half the prawns and stir fry quickly for about a minute then add half the curry leaves and fry for about 30 seconds and then remove to a separate plate. Repeat the process with the remaining prawns. They should be half cooked at this stage.

3. For the black pepper sauce: Wipe the wok clean and return to the heat. Add the butter and melt until foaming. Add the garlic purée, ginger purée and spring onions and fry until aromatic (about 2-3 minutes) then add the chilli paste, miso paste and cracked black pepper and fry for a further minute.

4. Add the sauces and chicken stock and bring to the boil and reduce by a quarter. Combine the corn flour and water to make a thin paste and whisk into the boiling sauce and thicken. Then add the prawns and curry leaves to the sauce. Place into a large bowl and serve with the rice and iceberg lettuce cups.

5. Garnish with mint and coriander and a squeeze of lime.

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