This recipe for prawn cakes, popular street food in Cambodia, is similar to a fritter: chopped prawn meat is added to a tempura batter, which is then shallow-fried to flatten, and transferred to another pan for deep-frying. This technique results in crispy cakes that are perfect for dipping.
- 125 g tempura flour
- 185 ml water
- 200 g raw prawn (shrimp) meat, finely chopped
- vegetable oil, for deep-frying
Lime dipping sauce
- 250 ml (1 cup) lime juice
- 1 tsp freshly black ground pepper
- 1 tsp sea salt
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.
Combine the lime dipping sauce ingredients in a bowl and stir until the salt has dissolved. Set aside.
In a mixing bowl, whisk the flour with the water to form a smooth batter.
Add the prawn meat and mix again. Heat 80 ml of vegetable oil in a large frying pan over a medium heat. In a wok, also heat enough vegetable oil for deep-frying to 180°C (350°F), or until a cube of bread dropped in the oil browns in 15 seconds.
For each prawn cake, add 2 tbsp of the prawn mixture to the frying pan. As soon as the mixture hits the pan, flatten each cake, using the spoon or a spatula, to about 2.5 mm.
Fry, in batches, for 1 minute, then transfer to the wok and deep-fry for 5 minutes on each side. Drain on paper towel.
Serve warm, with the lime dipping sauce.