300g raw king prawns, peeled and deveined
1 bird’s-eye chilli (optional)
6 fresh curry leaves
vegetable oil, for frying
For the marinade
½ tablespoon oyster sauce
1 teaspoon granulated sugar
1 teaspoon black pepper
½ tablespoon light soy sauce
1 egg white
For the sauce
2 salted eggs
6 tablespoons evaporated milk
2 teaspoons granulated sugar
a pinch of salt
1. Put the marinade ingredients in a bowl and mix together well, then add the prawns and leave to marinate for a minimum of 10 minutes, or up to 2 hours for best results.
2. To make the sauce, steam the eggs in a wok with a steamer stand for 10 minutes, then leave to cool. Once cool, peel off the shells and separate the whites from the yolks. Set aside the whites for use in another recipe and crumble the yolks into a small bowl. Using the underside of a spoon, blend the egg yolk into a paste, then mix it together with the rest of the sauce ingredients until smooth and free of lumps.
3. Finely chop the chilli, if using, and set aside.
4. Add the cornflour to the marinated prawns and mix together with your hands until the prawns are dry and dusty-white in colour.
5. Half-fill a large pot, wok or deep-fryer with vegetable oil and heat to 180°C (350°F), or until the tip of a wooden chopstick or skewer starts to fizz after a second or so in the oil.
6. Carefully add the prawns and deep-fry until golden brown, about 3 minutes. Remove the prawns carefully with a slotted spoon and drain well on a plate covered with kitchen paper.
7. In a separate wok, heat ½ tablespoon of vegetable oil over a low heat, add the curry leaves and chilli, if using, and stir-fry for 30 seconds or so until fragrant. Pour over the sauce and continue to cook, stirring, for a further minute or so until the sauce has thickened slightly and is just starting to boil. Add the prawns to the wok and toss through two to three times to mix everything together. Serve immediately.
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