Here I am with another vegan recipe for my fellow vegans: today we’ll be making vegan prawns from scratch!
Firstly let me say that I do no intend to offend anyone with the realistic resemblance of this vegan product to the real animals: everything I do is intended in the full respect of all living creatures and to help any transitioning vegans to the right path. I am also very creative and in the past I had the very unusual hobby of creating doll’s house food miniatures, hence the obsession with visually realistic results. If then they are even pleasant for my tastebuds, even better!
I recently posted my recipe for my vegan clams sauce (click to check the link) and I totally recommend trying the basic vegan prawns recipe described below with the same pasta sauce of the vegan clams recipe (either replacing the vegan clams with the vegan prawns, or why not adding them both!). So ingredients that match very well the condiment for the vegan prawns are:
- a sauce made with lots of fresh garlic, olive oil, cherry tomatoes, dry white wine, fresh parsley and ground white pepper
- lots of fresh lemon juice, salt, kelp powder, chopped garlic, olive oil, white pepper and if you like sauted mushrooms
- seaweeds and spices such as fried onions and cayenne pepper
- stir fried in soy sauce and veggies/ rice or noodles.
a final sprinkle of kelp seaweed granules will always add an intense sea taste, I love this condiment.
But now let’s start with the basic vegan prawns recipe and how did I came with this creation: I did lots of research and tried various solutions. I checked the ingredients of those ready made prawns generally found in asian supermarket but wasn;t convinced. Then I finally combined my ideas with a recipe found on an Italian vegan blog website and the result is great 🙂
You will need:
(makes about 20 vegan prawns)
4 tablespoons of basmati rice
3 tablespoons of rice flour + little extra
2-3 small pieces of nori seaweed (commonly used for making sushi)
2 teaspoons tomato paste
1 teaspoon sweet paprika
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon rice vinegar for sushi (or a teaspoon of sushi ready mix powder, which also includes seaweeds)
1 and 1/2 teaspooon of agave syrup or 1 teaspoon raw sugar
2 teaspoons of tomato paste
white pepper and salt to taste
LET’S COOK VEGAN PRAWNS!
Start boiling the basmati rice into a little bit of salted water (add a bit more salt that what you normally would), add agave, nori seaweed, 1 teaspoon of kelp and 1 teaspoon of tomato paste which will give the rice a pinkish/ pale orange colour.
Let cook for a few minutes, making sure you don’t overcook. Drain removing the excess water and let cool down.
Now you need your best ‘rice smashing’ skills: grab a fork and start smashing the rice in your plate until you get a consistency similar to a fine cous cous, like in the photo. Taste and add more salt and kelp if you like.
To create a paste you will proceed and add the rice flour, the consistency will still be quite sticky and I suggest working the paste with some rice flours on your fingers too. This will make the vegan prawns creation process a lot easier, even if you will need to rinse your hands a couple of times.
Start forming your vegan prawns: form a little ball (size of a grape) and shape it into what is supposed to look like a prawn. one end is thinner, the other end more chunky. Just squeeze one end between your finger to make it roughly look like these. No need to be perfect.
Add more rice flour to coat each vegan prawn, to make it more compact. Press with your finger to make sure it’s all nice and compact.
Now with a sharp knive carve a small indent along the ‘back’ of each vegan prawn. No precision is required, it’s just for realistic effect.
Place a teaspoon of paprika (not smoked) in a small plate diluted with a teaspoon of water and start ‘brushing’ the back and the ‘tail’ of each vegan prawn with the paste created with it. I simply used my fingers to do this, but you can go creative and use a toothpick, a small brush or wathever your creativity suggests 🙂 I insisted on the ‘tail’ for a more realistic effect. Don’t be too precise: this will mostly fade in the next step but required for a visual effect.
Add a couple of cups of salted water in a pan and as soon as the boiling begins, throw your prawns in it to boil for a couple of minutes of gentle boiling. Gently remove from the water with the help of a draining spatula and let cool on a plate.
As a final touch, using a non-stick pan, I added a teaspoon of tomato paste in some oilve oil on a low temperature and threw the vegan prawns in it for very few seconds stirring quickly so that the colour would irregularly spread on them.
Your happy vegan prawns are ready. The secret to improve their taste is the condiment! Go creative and share your results here with me. I would love to see your recipes!
I look forward to your comments.
Thank you for being vegan.