I adore grilled or barbecued prawns and this recipe is inspired by a memory of a meal al fresco under a bright Mediterranean sun. (Although not so much of my body was actually under the sun. Swathed in scarves and a hat and doing my best Grace Kelly impersonation of a person not designed for bright sunlight. It must be the eskimo in me). Not that I have to worry about an over-abundance of sunshine today!
But all that aside, use grey raw prawns (that turn pink on cooking), some of which come ready-peeled by thoughtful supermarkets to save you the fiddly bits.
Serves 4 as a starter or mezze
Skill level: Easy
Preparation time: 30 minutes
12 x large raw prawns, peeled, tails intact and intestinal tracts removed
1 tbsp olive oil
a pinch of saffron threads
salt and freshly ground pepper
honey and preserved lemon dressing:
¼ x preserved lemon rind
1 tbsp honey
3 tsp lemon juice
a pinch of dried chilli flakes
1½ tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
- Make the honey and preserved lemon dressing by trimming away any of the lemon flesh. Soak the preserved lemon rind in a bowl of water for 1 hour. Drain and pat dry (using kitchen paper). Coarsely chop the lemon rind, then transfer to a mortar and pound to a fine paste (using a pestle).
- Add honey, lemon juice, chilli flakes and 1 tbsp water and mix thoroughly to combine.
- Add olive oil, 1 tsp at a time, blending after each addition with the pestle, until all is incorporated.
- Preheat a barbecue or chargrill pan over high heat.
- Brush prawns with olive oil and grill for 3-5 minutes on each side or until just cooked.
- Transfer prawns to a bowl and spoon half of the dressing over. Stand for 5 minutes to marinate, then season to taste.
- Serve drizzled with remaining dressing. Scatter a little saffron or a few chilli flakes over and serve.