:: Summer means three things – sun, surf and seafood. And while I’ll happily take ample servings of the latter two, I’m not so good with Perth’s blazing hot summer sunshine. Which is a shame, considering how many expats I know who’ve flocked from the northern hemisphere for just that reason!
Prawns are a quintessential ingredient to the Aussie barbeque and this recipe combines the classic duo of prawns and garlic with nutty coconut. The caramalised coconut shards play wonderfully with the sweetness of the prawn meat, and you could also add some chopped fresh chilli for an extra kick.
My favourite accompaniment to the grilled prawns is this wonderfully light and refreshing watermelon salad. The juicy, sweet watermelon contrasts beautifully with creamy, salty feta and the peppery, herbacious rocket, making it a wonderful addition to any summer table.
Try to buy the biggest and freshest local prawns you can afford.
Grilled Coconut Prawns
12 large prawns, peeled and de-veined
3 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp brown sugar
5 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 tbsp cider vinegar
2 tbsp shaved or desiccated coconut
Watermelon & Feta Salad
100g watermelon, cut into 1cm thick wedges
1/2 cup kalamata olives, halved
1/2 red onion, thinly sliced
2 handfuls fresh rocket
3 tbsp balsamic vinegar
3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
Freshly ground black pepper
Mix together olive oil, vinegar, brown sugar, garlic, coconut and salt, and pour over the prawns. Stir gently so that all prawns are equally coated and set aside for 10 minutes to marinate.
Heat a frypan over high heat and place prawns in an even layer in the pan. Sear on one side for 1-2 minutes, then turn and cook until just opaque. Remove and place on absorbent paper while you prepare the salad.
Start by making the salad dressing, whisking together the vinegar and olive oil.
In a shallow platter, place the rocket, watermelon slices, olives and sliced red onion. Season with fresh black pepper. Crumble the feta over the top, pour over the dressing and gently together toss with your fingers.
Serve immediately with the grilled prawns and a lovely chilled glass of chenin blanc.