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Samlor Ktih Bongkia
 Tiger Prawn Coconut Ragoût


 Tiger Prawn Coconut Ragoût

When I was living in a remote corner of Africa with only limited local ingredients let alone exotic foods (which had to be imported), I created a dish (with what was available in my cupboard)  which I named Chicken Coconut’. Since then, as it is so simple to make, I cook it often for family and friends. One friend even went a step further by creating her own version using tiger prawns instead of chicken. She was so pleased with the result that she christened the dish ‘Tiger Prawn Coconut Ragoût’ and very kindly shared the recipe with me; and in turn, I would like to share it with you. I do hope you will enjoy cooking it too.

Did you know … 

Prawns are loaded with minerals and Omega-3 fatty acid. Due to their high content of zinc, it is reported that eating prawns can boost fertility in men. They are also ideal for keeping your weight in check as they are said to be generally lower in fat and calories than beef, poultry and pork.




Fresh tiger prawns shell-on (tiger shrimps) 600g (1¼ lb) – shelled, deveined1 and washed or 400g (14¼ oz) of fresh ready shelled tiger prawns
Vegetable oil 2 Tbsp – for shallow frying
Medium onion 1, peeled and finely chopped
Garlic 2 cloves – peeled and finely chopped
Red sweet pepper (bell pepper) ½ – deseeded, sliced and roughly chopped
Medium potato 1 – peeled and cut into bite size chunks
Coconut cream 1 tin x 166 ml (5.6 fl oz) or ¾ cup
Chicken stock 1 cup (alternatively, use ½ chicken stock cube mixed with 1 cup of boiling water)
Coriander (cilantro) leaves a few sprigs for garnish

For seasoning
Turmeric ½ tsp
Tomato purée 1½ Tbsp
Fish sauce 1 Tbsp
Sugar 1 Tbsp
Salt ½ tsp or to taste 


1 - In a wok or skillet, heat the oil until very hot. Add the onion and garlic, and stir-fry for 1 minute until fragrant. Then stir in the red pepper, turmeric, tomato purée, fish sauce, sugar, and salt. Stir-fry for 1 minute to mix. Add the potato chunks and continue stir-frying for a further 1-2 minutes. Sprinkle some more oil if it looks dry.  

2 - Stir in the coconut cream and the chicken stock. Bring to the boil. Then lower the heat to simmer for 15 minutes until the sauce thickens and the potato is cooked - stir occasionally to prevent burning. Increase the heat and bring back to the boil. Stir in the prawns and cook for 3-5 minutes depending on the size of the prawns (Note: overcooked prawns will become rubbery and less tasty). 

3 - Transfer to a serving bowl, garnish with coriander leaves, and serve with steamed rice, French baguette, pasta or noodles. 

Note: You may use this recipe as a vegetarian dish by substituting prawns with fresh tofu, fish sauce with soy sauce and chicken stock with vegetable stock. Tofu is available at Asian grocery stores or the ‘Mori-nu’ long-life firm tofu (349g) is available in most supermarkets. 


1  To peel and devein a prawn in one go, first remove the head (set aside for making stock); use a sharp paring knife or kitchen scissors to make a slit along the back of the prawn (shrimp) where the vein is located; peel off the shell and, if you like, leave the tail intact for decoration. Then, you can easily wash away the vein under running water.