Sunday, October 15, 2006
HHDD#6 - Malaysian Prawn fritters / a kiddie favourite
It's Hay Hay It's Donna Day (HHDD) time again and this time it's hosted by jenjen of Milk and Cookies. Jenjen was the winner of the previous HHDD event Savoury Tarts organised by Tami of running with tweezers and in tradition of the blog event, the winner of the round gets the honour of hosting the next round of HHDD.
When jenjen unveiled the theme for round 6 as F for Fritter, the first thing that came to my mind was CUCUR UDANG!! Cucur Udang or Prawn fritter is one of my favourite all time fritter. It's a Malaysian delicacy and it ranks right up the top of my fritter favourites list along with Cucur Bawang (Onion fritter), Pisang Goreng (Fried Banana a.k.a Banana Fritter), Corn fritters and Cempedak Goreng (Jackfruit fritter - for simplicity we'll call it jackfruit)
Growing up in Malaysia, I have fond memories of prawn and onion fritters as it was the best serving of food they had in the school canteen of the schools that I was educated in. In Malaysia, we have two schooling sessions in a day. Starting at 7:35am til 1:10pm for the morning sessions and from 1:10pm til 6:30pm for the afternoon sessions. We were only allowed one recess for the day because the kids in the morning would go home for lunch whilst the kids in the arvo would come to school after lunch. Recess would be at 10:30am and 3:15pm every day.
I remembered as a kid that my friends and I would be at the edge of our seat at at 5mins to recess and take turns to peek at the clock in the class room and the teacher, counting the last 5 minutes as they went buy, fingers crossed, hoping that she/he would finish their session in time. As soon as the recess bell rings, two of us would bolt out in time to be the first few at the canteen to buy the first onion fritter of the day.
The school canteen at the primary school where I was educated used to sell them for 10cents a piece and they were huge fritters, the size of a tennis ball and when you're 10 years old, 3 or 4 of them will fill you up until the end of the day at 1:10pm.
So.. they were ONLY huge balls of fried batter filled sparsely with bean sprouts and spring onions and served with watered down Maggi Chilli sauce. But they were still the best!
Then, in my high school years, the school canteen there had both the onion fritters and the upmarket prawn fritters. The onion fritters were 20cents (the price inflated! because technically it meant that if you're in high school your allowance would increase from 50cents a day to $2 a day) and half the size; and they had the prawn fritters for 50cents a piece, because the prawn fritters were different in shape and came with a piece of prawn on the top. But they were both still served with the same watered down Maggi Chilli sauce.
When I whinged to my mum that the prices were up and they quality of the food was poor compared to the ones at my old primary school, she whipped up a batch of fritters with both the onions and prawns in them, and they were peeled banana prawns! not the stingy unpeeled shrimp they had at the canteen. They were the best fritters I had ever had! and I never looked back since. (they were served with Real Maggi Chilli sauce.. not the watered down version!)
I still miss mum's version. Occasionally when I go home for dinner mum would ask what I wanted for dinner.. sometimes.. when I crave it, I would ask for her prawn fritters or whatever else she makes that I missed eating..and if I was lucky.. I would get it the next fortnight when I go home for dinner :D
Unfortunately, I couldn't get hold of my mum's recipe (because like all mums, her recipes are stored in her memory bank and she needed time to sit and think it out) but I found an Amy Beh recipe from Kuali.com that I adapted to try and emulate my mum's feat. (Amy Beh is a famous Malaysian cook)
20 raw prawns, peeled and chopped into small pieces
275g self-raising flour
60g rice flour
1 small egg, lightly beaten
A handful of bean sprouts, tailed
2 stalk spring onion, chopped
1 onion, finely sliced
1 tsp salt
¼ tsp pepper
½ tsp sugar
½ tsp chicken stock granules
½ tsp sesame oil
Oil for deep frying
Your favourite chilli sauce.
Sift plain and rice flour together into a large mixing bowl and season with salt, pepper, sugar, chicken stock and sesame oil.
Add the beaten egg and water and mix into a batter.
Mix in the prawns, bean sprouts, spring onion, and onion then leave batter to stand for 30–40 minutes.
Heat oil in a saucepan
For each fritter, drop 1 chinese spoon of batter into the oil and fry until golden brown.
Drain the excess oil on paper towels.
Serve with your favourite chilli sauce/ sweet chilli sauce.
*I had mine with Lingham's chilli sauce.
Hay Hay It's Donna Day is the brainchild of Barbara of Winos and foodies.