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Easy Steam Prawn Chinese Recipe: Step-by-Step Guide

Looking for a quick and tasty Chinese recipeSteamed prawns could be the answer. This dish is simple to prepare and can be enjoyed by both seafood enthusiasts and those who aren't big fans of seafood. With its gentle taste and soft consistency, steamed prawns are an ideal option for individuals seeking a healthy and light meal.

A hot wok sizzles as plump prawns are tossed with ginger, garlic, and soy sauce. Steam rises, carrying the aroma of savory Chinese spices

When it comes to prawns, there are many different types available, including tiger prawns, king prawns, and jumbo prawns. You can choose the type that suits your taste and budget. If you're feeling adventurous, you could even try using other types of seafood in this recipe, such as scallops or mussels.

To make steamed prawns, you'll need a few simple ingredients, including garlic, ginger, soy sauce, and rice wine. You'll also need a steamer basket and a plate to arrange the prawns on. Once you have all your ingredients ready, it's time to start cooking. In the next section, we'll take a closer look at the ingredients and techniques used to make this delicious dish.

Key Takeaways

  • Steamed prawns is a simple and delicious Chinese recipe that is perfect for seafood lovers and non-seafood lovers alike.
  • You can use different types of prawns or other seafood to make this dish.
  • To make steamed prawns, you'll need simple ingredients and a steamer basket.

Understanding Prawns

A steaming pot of prawns in a flavorful Chinese sauce, surrounded by aromatic herbs and spices, with steam rising from the dish

Prawns are a popular seafood ingredient that is used in many dishes around the world. They are a good source of protein and can be cooked in many different ways. If you're planning to make a steam prawn Chinese recipe, here are some things you should know about prawns.

Selecting Quality Prawns

When selecting prawns, look for ones that are fresh and have a firm texture. The shells should be shiny and have a slightly translucent appearance. If you're buying whole prawns, make sure that the heads and shells are intact. This will help to preserve the flavour and freshness of the prawns.

Preparation Basics

Before cooking prawns, it's important to prepare them properly. Start by removing the head and shell, but leave the tail intact. Then, using a sharp knife, make a shallow cut along the back of the prawn and remove the vein. This will help to remove any grit or sand that may be present.

When cooking prawns, it's important not to overcook them. This can cause the meat to become tough and rubbery. A good rule of thumb is to cook prawns for no longer than 3-4 minutes, or until they turn pink and opaque.

Seafood is a great addition to any steam prawn Chinese recipe. If you want to add some variety, you can also use other types of seafood such as scallops or squid. Just make sure that they are fresh and properly prepared before cooking.

Ingredients and Substitutes

A steaming bowl of prawn stir-fry with traditional Chinese ingredients and possible substitutes laid out on a wooden cutting board

Primary Ingredients

To make a delicious Chinese-style steamed prawn, you will need fresh prawns. It is recommended to use large, succulent, and juicy prawns for the best taste. You can also use other types of seafood such as scallops or mussels as a substitute for prawns if you prefer.

Seasoning and Flavours

The key to making a flavourful steamed prawn dish is to use the right seasoning and flavours. Garlic is an essential ingredient in this recipe, and it provides a strong, pungent flavour that complements the sweetness of the prawns. Soy sauce adds a savoury, umami taste, while sugar balances out the saltiness and adds a touch of sweetness. Salt is also used to enhance the flavour of the dish.

Other essential seasoning and flavourings include spring onions, oyster sauce, and sesame oil. Spring onions add a fresh, oniony taste and a pop of colour to the dish. Oyster sauce provides a rich, savoury taste that complements the prawns well. Sesame oil adds a nutty, aromatic flavour that enhances the overall taste of the dish.

Garnishing Essentials

Garnishing is an important part of Chinese cuisine, and it adds a touch of elegance and visual appeal to the dish. Some essential garnishing ingredients for steamed prawns include coriander leaves, sliced red chillies, and lime wedges. These ingredients add a pop of colour and freshness to the dish and also provide some extra flavour.

Overall, the ingredients and flavours used in this recipe are simple and easy to find, and they work together to create a delicious and flavourful dish that is perfect for any occasion.

Steaming Techniques

Prawns sizzle in a hot wok, surrounded by billowing steam. A chef's hand holds a spatula, tossing the prawns with precision

When it comes to preparing prawns using the steaming method, there are several techniques you need to keep in mind. These techniques include setting up the steamer, timing, and temperature.

Setting Up the Steamer

The first step in steaming prawns is to set up your steamer. Fill the steamer with water, making sure that the water level is below the steaming rack. You can add some oil to the water to prevent the prawns from sticking to the steaming rack.

Timing and Temperature

The timing and temperature are crucial when it comes to steaming prawns. You need to bring the water to a boil and then reduce the heat to low. Place the prawns on the steaming rack and cover the steamer. Steam the prawns for about 4-5 minutes until they turn pink and are cooked through.

It is important to note that the cooking time may vary depending on the size of the prawns. If you are using larger prawns, you may need to steam them for a few more minutes.

When steaming prawns, it is also important to use fresh seafood. You can use other types of seafood such as scallops or mussels as well. However, make sure to adjust the cooking time accordingly.

In summary, steaming prawns is a simple and healthy way to enjoy seafood. By following the right techniques, you can ensure that your prawns are cooked to perfection.

Assembling the Dish

Steam prawns arranged on a platter surrounded by ginger, scallions, and garlic. A wok sizzles with hot oil as the chef prepares the dish

Layering the Ingredients

To assemble the dish, start by layering the ingredients. Begin with a bed of mung bean vermicelli noodles or glass noodles at the bottom of a steaming plate. Next, place the cleaned and deveined steamed garlic prawns on top of the noodles. You can also add other seafood such as scallops or clams to the dish for added flavour and texture.

Once the seafood is arranged on the plate, sprinkle some chopped scallions and ginger slices over the top. This will add a touch of freshness to the dish. Finally, garnish the dish with some fried garlic and crispy shallots for an added crunch.

The Steaming Process

To steam the dish, fill a wok or a large pot with water and bring it to a boil. Place the plate with the assembled ingredients on top of a steaming rack and carefully lower it into the wok or pot. Cover the plate with a lid and steam the dish for about 6-8 minutes or until the prawns turn pink and opaque.

Once the dish is steamed, remove it from the heat and serve it immediately. You can also drizzle some seasoning sauce over the dish before serving for added flavour.

Seafood, such as prawns, is an excellent addition to this dish. You can also use other seafood such as scallops or clams to add more flavour and texture to the dish. Make sure to clean and devein the seafood before using it in the dish.

Serving and Presentation

Steaming prawns in a bamboo steamer, surrounded by sliced ginger, garlic, and green onions. A delicate steam rises from the dish, creating an inviting and appetizing scene

Once your steamed garlic prawns are cooked to perfection, it's time to present them in an appetizing manner. Here are some tips on how to serve and present your prawns:

Plating the Prawns

When it comes to plating the prawns, simplicity is key. You can place the prawns on a bed of steamed rice or noodles, or simply serve them on their own. If you want to add a touch of elegance to your dish, you can garnish the plate with some fresh herbs, such as coriander or parsley.

To make your dish more visually appealing, you can also arrange the prawns in a circular or linear pattern on the plate. This will make the dish look more professional and appetizing.

Pairing with Sides

To complement the flavour of the steamed garlic prawns, you can pair them with a variety of sides. Some popular options include:

  • Stir-fried vegetables: A simple stir-fry of bok choy, snow peas, and carrots can add some colour and nutrition to your dish.

  • Steamed broccoli: Steamed broccoli is a great side dish for steamed prawns as it adds a nice crunch and freshness to the dish.

  • Fried rice: Fried rice is a classic accompaniment to any Chinese dish, and it goes particularly well with steamed prawns.

  • Seafood soup: If you want to add more seafood to your meal, you can pair your steamed prawns with a seafood soup. This will add some variety to your meal and enhance the overall flavour.

Proposing the use of seafood in the recipe, you can try using other types of seafood such as scallops, clams, or mussels in combination with the prawns. This will give your dish a more complex flavour and texture. However, be sure to adjust the cooking time accordingly so that all the seafood is cooked to perfection.

Frequently Asked Questions

A steaming pot of prawns in a flavorful Chinese sauce, surrounded by aromatic herbs and spices, with a bowl of rice on the side

How long should you steam prawns for optimal taste?

The optimal time for steaming prawns depends on their size. Generally, large prawns take around 5-6 minutes to steam, while smaller ones can take as little as 3-4 minutes. The key is to avoid overcooking the prawns, as this can cause them to become rubbery and lose their flavour.

What type of prawns are best suited for steaming?

Fresh, high-quality prawns are the best choice for steaming. Look for prawns that are firm, with a slightly translucent appearance and a fresh, ocean-like smell. King prawns are a popular choice for steaming, but other varieties such as tiger prawns can also work well.

Can you share a simple method for steaming prawns?

To steam prawns, start by cleaning and deveining them. Then, place them in a steamer basket or on a plate and season with salt and pepper. Steam the prawns for 3-6 minutes, depending on their size, until they are cooked through and tender.

What's the secret to keeping prawns juicy when steamed?

The key to keeping prawns juicy when steaming is to avoid overcooking them. Cook the prawns for just long enough to turn pink and opaque, then remove them from the heat. You can also marinate the prawns in a mixture of soy sauce, ginger, and garlic before steaming to add extra moisture and flavour.

Is there a traditional Chinese garlic prawn steaming technique?

Yes, there is a traditional Chinese garlic prawn steaming technique. To prepare garlic prawns, first marinate the prawns in a mixture of soy sauce, garlic, ginger, and rice wine. Then, steam the prawns with the marinade for around 5-6 minutes until they are cooked through. Serve with steamed rice and vegetables for a delicious and healthy meal.

What are some tips for infusing flavour into prawns during steaming?

To infuse flavour into prawns during steaming, try adding aromatics such as ginger, garlic, and scallions to the steaming liquid. You can also marinate the prawns in a mixture of soy sauce, sesame oil, and rice wine before steaming. For an extra burst of flavour, try adding seafood such as clams or mussels to the steamer basket along with the prawns.