It had been quite some time since I had some prawns. I love prawns but try to refrain from them as they spell danger for my age and health. I decided this time I would do something queer with it. I love food presentations and I love to coyly watch the husband dig into it after he asks the million dollar question…”Have you clicked a picture yet, can I dig into it now?” And he looks so cute of late with those new specs of his!
So without further ado I will leap into the recipe. We got our sea food promptly from our trusted Supreme Seafood, Chennai. It had been such a long time since we cooked seafood at home so this was such a welcome change. I noticed the husband ordered quite a lot to keep him happy the next three weeks. He knows I am allergic to fish so made sure that he personally took the packs from the chap when he brought it home.
I decided to hide these beauties in a pie. I prepared my spicy prawn masala (there are many recipes on prawns in my blog) and set it aside. I made the basic short crust pastry by mixing a cup of flour with 60 g of chilled and chopped butter in a food processor. I did add a few drops of cold water until the dough combined and made a soft and pliable dough. This dough was wrapped in a greaseproof paper or a cling film and kept in the refrigerator for at least half an hour or more before rolling it out into the desired shape.
Preheat the oven to 200 degrees Celsius.
I took my small tart tins and then took out the cold pastry dough out from the fridge, flattened it and rolled it out on a light floured surface, I cut it out to shape the tart tins. If there is any excess dough it can be trimmed off. Prick the base of the pastry with the help of a fork as shown in the picture and refrigerate them once again while they are in the small tart tins. Once chilled and taken out of the fridge, bake the tarts like so for around fifteen to twenty minutes or until a nice brown crust is formed. You can bake blind them (place a few hard pebbles or seeds on small butter paper over the forked base) in this way you get a firm base or crust.
Next is to prepare the White Sauce- melt a tbsp. of unsalted butter over low heat and to it add a tbsp. of all purpose flour and sauté it lightly. To this slowly trickle in a cup of lukewarm milk, continue whisking it such that no lumps are formed and we get an almost thick white paste. This thick white sauce with a sprinkle of salt and pepper will be at length poured over the pie.
Now it is time to assemble our characters for the grand finale. The baked pie crust is taken out, the prawn filling /my prawn masala is assembled in the base in such a way that each person gets a prawn or two in each bite in the tart dish. I added some sliced garlic sautéed in olive oil over the prawns followed by a drizzle of the seasoned white sauce followed by grated cheese and some dry basil or fresh spring onions. Bake for another ten to fifteen minutes or until it is baked through.
Wait for the pies to cool down a bit and then extract them out of the tart tins and serve them hot. You may do them in larger tart tins as well and later cut them into wedges and serve hot.
The ingredients can vary as per individual choices or how you pair veggies or a non-veg with a veggie. Be creative! I always eat with my eyes first! The prawns were delightful in this recipe.
Inconsistent Chef' is a food blogger who shares her personal experience of cooking traditional and fusion dishes using ingredients available in India. Some of her dishes are outrightly native, while some are exotic and brings in elements from different continents and cultures. The accent here is on the experience of conjuring up a dish - the texture, colours, flavours and their play on the palate. The presentation of recipes is unique that there is no need for measuring cups or quantities. It's measuring by your senses and getting it right by sheer instinct.