Presto Pasta Night: Prawns and Noodles in Thai Coconut Broth

Shrimp with Thai Coconut Broth

I seem to make a lot of pasta on Thursday nights, and then run out of time to write up a post for Presto Pasta Night, but this week I got an earlier start. Jeremy made a Costco run after work on Tuesday to pick up some protein for meal while I kept Freyja company at home. He soon returned with some lovely fresh tiger prawns and a hope of getting coconut shrimp for dinner. Unfortunately for Jeremy, I don’t care for coconut shrimp, so he’ll have to save that craving for restaurant ordering. The flavor profile was a good one, though, so I hunted down an alternate recipe for sautéed shrimp in a Thai coconut broth with noodles.

It turned out to be a quick, easy meal, despite the fact that I was short on a few ingredients: I didn’t have quite enough of either curry powder or fresh ginger. I also had no ramen noodles (no big loss there), so I used some broken Barilla Plus spaghetti instead. The recipe’s process needed a bit of refining: I kept the broth and noodles separate until the end, sautéed the prawns and their aromatics in a large skillet, and poured the broth and noodles over top of the prawns, tossing it all together and scooping it with a ladle and tongs into our pasta bowls. We ate it with fork and spoons, and I surprised myself by actually liking it. The real kicker is that I liked the noodles and broth better than the prawns, which I felt I had overcooked a bit. I had anticipated that if I didn’t like the flavors of the dish, at least I could pick out the prawns to eat, but it turned out the other way around. Jeremy was a bit put off by the thinness of the “sauce,” but after I told him it was meant to be a soupy broth, he ate two bowlsful and seemed very pleased that there was enough left over for lunch; hopefully he’s not missing that coconut shrimp too much.

This is my entry for Presto Pasta Night #28, hosted by the fabulous Ruth at Once Upon a Feast. Drop by and check out the pasta party every Friday for some great recipes.

Sautéed Prawns and Noodles in Thai Coconut Broth

Thai Coconut Broth
6 oz spaghetti noodles
1 (14 1/2-ounce) can chicken broth
1 (14-ounce) can light coconut milk
1 T minced garlic
2 tsp minced fresh ginger
2 tsp curry powder
1 T chopped shallots

Sautéed Prawns
1 1/2 lb peeled and deveined medium-size fresh tiger prawns
2-3 T olive oil
2 tsp sesame oil
2 tsp minced garlic
2 tsp chopped shallots
1/2 tsp dry ginger
1 T lemon juice
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper

Cook noodles until al dente in a large saucepan. Drain and rinse with cold water.

Bring broth and next 5 ingredients to a boil in saucepan; reduce heat, and simmer 10 minutes. Meanwhile, begin cooking prawns.

Sauté prawns in hot olive and sesame oils in a large skillet over medium heat for 2 minutes, or just until prawns turn pink. Add garlic and next 5 ingredients, and stirfry until fragrant. Pour hot coconut broth and noodles over prawns, toss through to combine, and slurp up with a fork and spoon.

Source: Adapted from Southern Living, November 1998.

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