Prawns with Datil Chile Sauce

This Caribbean pepper is famous for being the hottest chile pepper in the world. They come in a variety of shapes and colors(yellow, orange,green, red,chocolate). Not only are they extremely hot, but they also have a unique,distinctively fruity flavor.

It is the key ingredient in the popular Jamaican Jerk sauce. The habanero is also widely used in many different types of hot sauces. The popularity of this chile pepper continues to grow and is becoming easier to find on the grocery shelf.

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1 lb jumbo prawns, peeled, deveined
2 Tbsp fresh lime juice
3 garlic cloves, pressed
1/2 tsp coriander, freshly ground
1/2 tsp white pepper, freshly ground
1/2 tsp sea salt
2 Tbsp olive oil for cooking
1/4 cup cilantro, chopped for garnish

Chile- Cilantro Sauce:
2 Datil chiles, stemmed, seeded, chopped (substitute 1 habanero or 2 jalapeƱo chiles)
2 Tbsp fresh lime juice
2 garlic cloves, pressed
1 pint sour cream (substitute low fat yogurt)
1/2 tsp turmeric (substitute paprika)
1 cup cilantro chopped
1/2 tsp sea salt


Place shrimp in a large bowl and toss with lime juice, garlic, white pepper and coriander. Cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.

While prawns are marinating, prepare the sauce. Combine sauce ingredients in a blender and puree to a smooth consistency. Set aside in a covered bowl at room temperature for serving.

Cook prawns in batches if necessary. Preheat a large heavy skillet to medium high and coat evenly with the olive oil. Place prawns over the surface leaving room between them so they do not get soggy while cooking. This will allow them to caramelize nicely. Cook until they start turning opaque and golden brown. Turn to do the same on the other side. (about 1-2 minutes each side.) Do not overcook. Serve immediately.

On each plate, arrange prawns over a bed of rice and spoon the sauce over the prawns. Garnish with chopped cilantro. Serve with salad.

From Larry Noggle’s Chile Peppers calendar.