This prawn dish is really delicious! Well, with coconut cream and crabfat, yes crabfat, in the mix how can't it be? Sinful, definitely. But every bite worth cheating on your diet for.
Start by preparing the prawns. Have them your way – shell-on, peeled, butterflied. . .won't matter too much. I went for the last option – butterflied, so I get to keep all those deep prawn flavors from the heads and shells but at the same time exposing all its flesh to all those rich flavors going on in my pot.
Shouldn't take much time to do, so if you have ten minutes of extra time, butterfly those prawns. It'll all be worth your effort, trust me.
Just take a sharp paring knife, pierce it down through the segment of shell just below the prawn's head, and in a sawing motion, run it all the way down to the tail. You may want to devein your prawns too now that you've got the flesh exposed.
Next, build up your marinade which should also end up as your sauce. In a bowl, mix the coconut milk, crabfat paste, red Thai curry paste, and fish sauce.
Go easy on the fish sauce at this point to keep the dish ending up too salty. In fact, you may skip it for now and just add it in before serving.
In case you'll have a hard time finding crabfat paste, try checking on Asian specialty food stores. They come in bottles or sometimes canned. To get some of the guilt off, it ain't pure crab fat in there but a mix of crabmeat, some starch, some seasoning, and of course some crab fat.
While at the specialty store, go get a bottle of Thai red curry paste too. We'll be needing some good spice in this recipe to cut down some of the richness in the dish. Go get a big bottle, it'll work excellent anyway for a lot of Asian dishes.
Get the prawns into the sauce and leave to marinate for about an hour, covered, in the refrigerator.
You're almost done. Just get the prawns and marinade into the pot together with some aromatics to cook. Go for delicate in your choice of aromatics. Some sweetness from a few scallions, and some peppery flavor from frsh jalapenos should be enough to balance out this rich dish.
Adding some garlic would be excellent but your crab fat paste most probably has garlic in it out of the bottle so there won't be any need for extra. You may however fry some garlic slices crisp and use it as a topping for some texture later.
Depending on the size of the prawns you've used, you'll need somewhere in between one and two hours in the slow cooker to get them perfectly done. Try checking on their color at the one-hour mark. They'll turn pink all over when they're done.
This prawn dish is so good on its own you wouldn't want anything too flavorful to go with it. Plain white rice should be enough.