A refreshing salad with balanced sharp flavours and plenty of green.
- 2 lemongrass stalks, white part only, finely chopped, trimmings reserved
- 2 cm piece ginger, peeled and finely sliced, trimmings reserved
- Sea salt, to taste
- 8 large raw prawns, shelled, intestinal tract removed, tails left intact
- 1 red Asian shallot, peeled and thinly sliced
- 5 g round mint leaves
- 5 g coriander leaves
- 1 garlic clove
- 1 long green chilli, seeds removed
- 1 coriander root
- 1 tbsp grated palm sugar
- 1 tbsp fish sauce
- 100 ml lime juice
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
- For the dressing, place the garlic, chilli and coriander root in a mortar and pestle and pound into a paste. Stir in the palm sugar, fish sauce and lime juice, then check the seasoning and adjust if necessary. It should be a balance of hot, sweet, sour and salty in that order.
- Bring a saucepan of water to the boil. Add the reserved lemongrass and ginger trimmings and a good pinch of salt. Add the prawns and cook for 90 seconds, then drain.
- When cool enough to handle, tear the prawns apart with your fingers and place in a bowl. Add chopped lemongrass and ginger, sliced shallot, herbs and enough dressing to moisten and toss to combine. Place in a shallow serving bowl, pour over a little more dressing and serve immediately.
Adam Liaw cooks, laughs, and explores culture with some of Australia's most beloved in The Cook Up With Adam Liaw.
Photography by Danielle Abou Karam.