Prawn Appetisers with Tamarind Sauce – Miang Kham

While holidaying in Chiang Mai in the north of Thailand for a few days recently we ate some delicious prawn appetisers called Miang Kham.

Betel leaves are sold in my local Asian grocery store, so I bought a packet and was able to whip up these tasty, healthy morsels in no time flat.

You might want to make double the tamarind dressing recipe. It keeps in the fridge for weeks and is useful to serve with all sorts of things, such as grilled salmon or chicken.

8 large prawns, peeled (raw or cooked)
1 Tbs oil
2-3 Tbs tamarind dressing
8 fresh betel leaves (from Asian shops)
2 Tbs roasted peanuts or crispy fried shallots (from Asian shops), or both
Fresh coriander leaves

Make tamarind sauce. Arrange the betel leaves, shiny side up, on a serving tray. Heat oil in a frying pan and cook the prawns. If using raw prawns, cook for about 3 minutes each side or until cooked through. If using cooked prawns just cook them for a minute or so, to heat through. Add the tamarind sauce and stir to coat well.

Arrange a few peanuts and one prawn on each betel leaf. Divide any remaining tamarind sauce left in the pan between the prawns. Sprinkle with crispy fried shallots, if using I didn’t use them in the photo. Top each one with a coriander leaf or two.

To eat the Miang Kham just pick up a betel leaf, pull the sides together to enclose the filling then pop it into your mouth.

Makes 8

Variations: use cubes or strips of chicken or scallops instead of prawns. Use lettuce or radicchio leaves instead of betel leaves.

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