Prawn Curry (Gulai Udang)
This recipe and others can be found in the 12-part illustrated series "A World of Curries". You can read all about this unique Indian flavor here.
10 dried small hot red chiles, such as piquins, stems removed
5 candlenuts (or substitute macadamia nuts or cashews)
2 stalks lemongrass, bulbs included
1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
1 large piece galangal, peeled and chopped (or substitute ginger)
1 small onion, chopped
1 teaspoon prawn or shrimp paste
1 tablespoon ghee (recipe here) or vegetable oil
4 curry leaves (optional)
1 1/2 pounds prawns or large shrimp, peeled, heads and tails removed (optional), deveined if desired
1 1/2 cups thick coconut milk, recipe here
In a food processor, combine the chiles, nuts, lemongrass, turmeric, galangal, onion, and prawn paste and puree to a fine paste.
Heat the oil in a skillet or wok and fry the paste and curry leaves for 5 minutes. Add the prawns and coconut milk and cook, uncovered, over medium heat until the prawns are done, about 15 minutes.