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Goan Hot Prawns Pickle-Style
(Prawn Balchao)


A traditional recipe of the piquant and fiery Goan-style prawns.

Indian Seafood & Fish Recipes

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Serves: 4 
Cooking time (approx.):  minutes
Style: Goan Non-Vegetarian

500  gram(s) headless fresh prawns shelled, deveined and cleaned
4  onions finely chopped
4  tomatoes finely chopped
2  green chillies deseeded and chopped
1  sprig curry leaves
4  tablespoon(s) oil
salt, sugar and vinegar to taste
Grind to a fine paste:
2  dry red chillies preferably kashmiri
1  teaspoon(s) black peppercorns
1  tablespoon(s) mustard seeds
2  teaspoon(s) cumin seeds
½  teaspoon(s) turmeric powder
1  tablespoon(s) ginger-garlic paste
1  tablespoon(s) vinegar or as per taste

  1. Rub the prawns with some salt and a pinch of the turmeric powder. Keep aside for 5 minutes, wash well and drain. Rub the ground paste into the prawns and keep aside till required for further use.
  2. Heat the oil in a heavy-bottomed pan and drop in the curry leaves. Add the chopped onions and saute on medium heat for about 3  minutes or till the onions are light brown. Add the tomato pieces and fry till the oil leaves the sides.
  3. Add the prawns along with the marinade and stir-fry briefly. Add the chopped green chillies, salt, sugar and vinegar to taste. Mix well. Cover and cook on low heat for about 10  minutes or till the prawns are cooked and the oil starts floating on top.


  • Traditionally, this is a spicy, sweet and sour recipe. However, the amount of red and green chillies can be reduced or increased as required.
  • The quantity of vinegar depends upon the desired level of sourness.
  • This dish is also made alternatively by omitting tomatoes.
  • This recipe tastes best after it is allowed to pickle for 2 days!

Serve hot with: bread slices accompanied with a tall glass of chilled Appetizing Kokum in Yoghurt (Quick Sol Kadi) or with Appetizing Kokum in Coconut Milk (Sol Kadi) poured over hot boiled rice.

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