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How To Make British Indian Restaurant (BIR) Prawn Jalfrezi

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The word Jalfrezi is a combination of two words, ‘Jal’ meaning spicy and ‘frezi’ meaning stir-fry

prawn jalfrezi

prawn jalfrezi done British Indian restaurant style


Prawn jalfrezi is a popular BIR curry that is easy and fast to make. Like most BIR curries, you can cook this dish in ten minutes or less. As this is a restuarant style curry, You could cook the prawns and prepare them in advance. This is how it is usually done at Indian restaurants in order to get the curry to the table faster.

Jalfrezis were invented in the days of the British Raj as a way of using up leftovers. If you would like to read a little more about the concept behind jalfrezi curries, and try a really nice curry, take a look at my rather more authentic chicken jalfrezi recipe here.

Prawn curry fans who like a bit of spice will love this curry. The peppers, onions and green chillies add a nice crunch to the recipe that really works great.

Serves 4


Prawn jalfrezi INGREDIENTS


3 Tablespoon ghee or vegetable oil
25 Medium sized fresh prawns cooked, shelled and cut into thirds
2 Tablespoons garlic and ginger paste
1 Tablespoon roasted cumin seeds grinded into a powder
A pinch of turmeric
700ml curry gravy
1 green bell pepper – thinly sliced
1 red bell pepper – thinly sliced
1 white onion – thinly sliced
3 green chillis – chopped into rings
Salt and pepper to taste – I use a lot of black pepper with this dish


Heat a wok or large frying pan over the highest heat.

Add the ghee or vegetable oil.

Throw in the prawns and fry them until they are pink and lightly browned. Cut them in thirds and set aside in a bowl.

Now toss in the bell pepper slices, onion and green chilli.

Stir the vegetables around for about 30 second and then add the cumin powder, turmeric and ginger and garlic paste.

Fry for a further ten seconds before adding the curry gravy.

Reduce the heat slightly and simmer for about two minutes before adding the prawns.

Stir to combine and serve when the prawns are heated through.

I’m always looking for new recipes to try. Do you have a jalfrezi curry you’d like to share?

Steve B

Saturday 15th of July 2023

This was very good. Even better the second day. The only change I made was adding 1 tsp of tamarind concentrate. The curry base sauce makes it easy. I plan to make a huge amount of the base sauce and freeze batches of it for quicker weeknight meals.

Dan Toombs

Monday 24th of July 2023

Great to hear, thanks for letting me know. Dan

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