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Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Watercress, Rocket & Prawn Salad with Corriander Lime dressing

                     This was one of the most awesome salad that I learnt from a Chef.  The Dressing is so awesome & the Orange segments added a lovely touch.

                     Laks this is for you. The dressing is lovely and I think you told me b4 you love to eat Salads. I would kill for the dressing. God bless.


    200 gm            Watercress, leaves & tender stems [imported Poh Choy]
    200 gm             Rocket leaves [imported Tong Ho]
        1 bunch       Mint leaves
        1 bunch       *Coriander leaves [Yin Sai]
        2                 *Coriander roots [Yin Sai, as aroma and flavour from root]
    450 gm               Medium size prawns, remove shells but leave the
                               tails intact for presentation & retain shells
        2                     sweet Oranges, cut into segments

     Ingredients for Dressing

          2 teasp         Coriander seeds
          1 teasp         grated Orange zest [do Not grate the white pith as bitter]
          2 Tabsp         Lemon juice
          3                    medium size pips Garlic, diced
          4                    Shallots/small onions, sliced
          1 Tabsp        *Coriander stems, finely sliced
          2 Tabsp        Brown Sugar, level [use the cake measuring Tablespoon]
          1 Tabsp        Fish Sauce [use the one made in China "Han River Brand"]
                                     as not as "fishy"
          1                    Red Chill, slice remove seeds if you like but wont be pungent
                                      as the seeds and the membrane of the chilli makes it hot
          5                    Red Chilli Padi, cut
          3 Tabsp        Olive Oil

     Prep work for dressing
  1. Wash the coriander seeds in a strainer, then dry it in the sun or if you want to avoid any dust or flies, wipe dry with kitchen towel, then place it on another kitchen towel and air dry same for a few hours or overnite.
  2. Fry it without oil in a hot kwali for 2 - 3 minutes; stirring all the while, till lightly toasted & fragrant; remove from kwali and cool completely.
  3. Put it in a dry mill & blend coarsely then put in air tight bottle.  If you are pressed for time you can use the store bought Coriander/Ketumbar powder but Nothing beats making your own as it is More Fragrant,  Fresher & of course, the obvious, Cleaner and it is not a big problem as you are doing a small quantity and you can make it a day or a week ahead :)  If you want you can also doing a slighter larger quantity then after milling it, put in a bottle, cling film it & store in Freezer.  I always like to do in small quantities as nothing beats freshly ground stuff.
      Method for salad
  1. Combine in a bowl the crushed coriander seeds and the remaining ingredients for the dressing and set aside [hereinafter I shall refer to the dressing as "A"].
  2. Wash the watercress, rocket, mint leaves and coriander leaves/yin sai and use a salad spinner, if you have, to drain off excess water.
  3. Fry the prawn shells with a little oil to release the aroma, add in the ground black pepper and prawns and fry till the prawns turn colour, about 3 - 5 minutes [do not over fry the prawns as prawns cook very fast and if you fry too long the texture of the prawns will be hard] or if you are health conscious you can blanch the prawns in hot water [add 1 teasp of salt in the hot water] for a short while till they are cooked and immediately immerse them in icy cold water to stop cooking process.  Drain the prawns, put it in a small bowl then marinade them with 2 Tablespoon of "A"; cling wrap and put it in the fridge.  The down side when you boil the prawns the sweetness would be lost in the boiling water and prawns taste and smell better when fried not too long.
  4. Toss the rocket, watercress, mint leaves and coriander leaves with the remainder of the dressing i.e. "A", the cold orange segments and serve with the warm prawns on top and sprinkle some paprika on the plate for decor.

               Variation: You can also serve with:-

                          (a)  steamed lobster/crabs, more work though but indefinitely taste better;
                          (b)  roasted chicken,
                          (c)  steamed chicken, for the health conscious :)

                 There are so many choices, think outside the box and find something that you love; you can also use cherry tomatoes like I did in the photo; if you want to increase the dressing; just double the ingredients for the dressing.

                   This is a lovely salad, hope you do try.  xoxo till the next post, Ophelia.

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