Throw a local caught, fresh or farmed, prawn on the barbie!

You can keep your chilli prawns, your prawn curry and deep fried prawns. I like em plain, simply dressed with a little lemon juice and pepper and  sandwiched between two slices of the freshest white bread, liberally buttered. Sometimes I'll add avocado for variation.

The most common varieties of prawn you'll find in shops are-

  • Ocean king prawns - up to 23cm in length with a rich flavour, moist and quite firm meat. They are extremely versatile to cook with but are best matched with robust flavours like chilli, garlic and coriander. Great on a sandwich too.
  • Black tiger prawns are large and flavoursome. Their bold red and white striping makes for impressive presentation so they are great served on large platter with lemon wedges for lazy lunches. Tiger prawns can grow to 20cm in length. They are best served shelled and cold or grilled or barbequed in their shell to keep them juicy and moist. 
  • Banana prawns have a delicate, sweet flavour up to 15cm long. They retain their shape well during cooking, so they can be cooked either in the shell, peeled with their tails intact and stir-fried or used in mild curries.
I always steer clear of imported prawns. The flavour is just not there and I'm dubious about some of their farming practices and I've heard them laughingly referred to as sewer prawns.

Best prawn tip I have is to avoid any prawns with black heads.  This means the prawns have been stressed during capture or processing.  Stressed meat is usually tougher and less tasty.