Pinch of saffron threads
1 tbsp hot water
2 tbsp (35g) unsalted butter
1 medium onion, finely chopped
¾ of 1 bird's eye chili, chopped
2 small bay leaves
Seeds from 10 green cardamom pods, crushed, husks reserved
Pinch of grated nutmeg
Pinch of light brown sugar
1 small garlic clove, finely chopped
2 tsp mild curry powder
⅓ cup (75ml) vermouth
⅔ cup (150ml) coconut milk
Small handful of toasted slivered almonds
2 cups (600g) cooked peeled large Atlantic prawns, at room temperature
⅓ - ⅔ cup (75–100ml) double cream or whipping cream
Buttered rice, to serve
1. Place the saffron in a teacup. Pour the hot water over the threads and leave to one side.
2. Melt the butter in a heavy-based frying pan over a medium heat. Cook the onion with the bay leaves, chili, cardamom seeds, nutmeg, and a large pinch of salt. Cook for about 6 minutes, stirring occasionally, or until the onion softens and turns golden. Add the garlic, stirring constantly for 1 minute. Do not let the garlic burn. Pour in the vermouth and, just before it has all evaporated, add the curry powder, the saffron with its water, and the sugar. Stir in the coconut milk and double cream, taste and adjust seasoning if salt required. Turn off the heat.
3. Toast the almonds in another pan with no oil over a medium heat, stirring occasionally. When golden, transfer to a small bowl.
4. Chop the cooked prawns into bite-sized pieces. Place the prawns into the curry sauce and, returning it to the heat, bring it to a gentle simmer. Do not boil it. Cook for a couple of minutes until the prawns are warmed through and the prawn flavor has mixed with the curry. Taste and season with more salt if required. Plate in a large bowl and sprinkle with the toasted almonds. Serve with buttered rice.