Chettinad Prawn masala – Chettinad eral masala

Any dish that is made out of prawns we would relish the taste of it as we love Prawns a lot. It’s our favourite seafood. At home, when mom gets prawn it was me who used to clean it so that I can get a big share of it when it’s cooked. But like some years back I started getting allergic to raw prawns. When I peel them my hands get itchy and I get small red blisters, but using hand gloves saves me in this situation. Also, my husband helps me with this cleaning part. Anyway, I am happy that I can eat cooked prawns.

Today I prepared this Chettinad prawn masala along with rice for lunch and we had the leftover with chapati for dinner. Chettinad cuisines are well known for there freshly blend spices. The freshly ground masala gives a nice flavour and taste to the dish. The aroma of the masala is so tempting. I have used shallots. You can also use onions but I would recommend you to try it out with shallots. They will give a special taste to the dish. Try this recipe for your coming weekends.

Also try the other prawn recipes.

Let’s see how to cook it.


For roasting and grinding

Coriander seeds – 1 tbsp

Cumin seeds – 1 tsp

Fennel seeds – 3/4 tsp

Peppercorns – 1 tsp

Dried red chillies – 6 to 7

Cardamom – 2

Cloves – 2

Cinnamon – 2 small size pieces

Star anise – 1

poppy seeds – 1.5 tsp(optional)

For Marination

Prawns – around 700 g ( 40 nos)

turmeric powder – 1/2 tsp

Red chilli powder – 1/2 tsp

Salt – 1 tsp

For masala

Gingelly oil – 2 tbsp

Mustard seeds – 1/2 tsp

Fennel seeds – 1/4 tsp

Sliced Shallots – 2 cups

Dried red chillies – 2 (broken into pieces)

Green chillies – 2 ( slit into halves)

curry leaves – 2 sprigs

ginger garlic paste – 1/2 tbsp

Tomato – 1 (finely chopped)

salt to taste


1.In a pan, dry roast coriander seeds, cumin seeds, fennel seeds, peppercorns, cardomom, cloves,cinnamon, star anise, dried red chillies.Dry roast them in low flame for few minutes.when you get a nice aroma of the spices switch off the flame.

2.If using poppy seeds add them after switching off the flame and roast them for a minute.Allow the ingredients to cool down.Then transfer it into a mixie jar.Grind them into a fine powder.

3.Clean, de-vein and wash the prawns well.Then marinate them with turmeric powder, red chilli powder and salt. Allow it to marinate for 15 to 30 minutes.

4.In a pan or pot, add oil.When the oil is hot, add mustard seeds.let it splutter.Then add fennel seeds, sliced shallots, dried red chillies, green chillies, curry leaves and site them well in oil until the shallots turn light golden.

5.Add ginger garlic paste.saute until the raw smell of it goes off. Add chopped tomatoes.Add little salt.Cover and cook until the tomatoes turn mushy and oil begins to separate. Stir them in between.Then add the marinated prawns.

6.Mix the prwns well with the masala.Add the ground masala powder and mix well.Add 2 tbsp of water. Check for salt and add if required.Cover and cook in low flame for 10 mins stirring it in between.Then switch off the flame.

Chettinad Prawn masala is ready.

Serve with Rice, chapathi or Roti.

Click here for Non-Vegetarian Recipes.

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