Tropical Paradise

Tropical Tempura

Summer, I declare, is seafood season for me. You have seen several seafood posts appear lately, and more to come I promise!

The recipe featured today is an unusual variation from the most-loved prawn tempura. Here, dried coconut is added, giving a richer note to the crunchy batter. Better still, to complete the tropical theme, these delicious looking prawns are served with a fruity salsa made from papaya, mango and lime juice. I was cautious at first on how all these flavours combined together. But it works! The salsa not only enhances the sweetness of the prawns but also gives the whole dish a refreshing zest. Perfect to start a summer party!

I am bringing this dish to Peabody´s Virtual Housewarming Party. There will be a lot of delicious food around, so be sure to come by. I think my dish will be a good start for the party since there will be a lot of to-die-for desserts and sweet treats from all out talented bakers. Can´t wait to try!

Tropical Tempura

Coconut Prawn Tempura with Mango and Papaya Salsa

Recipe adapted from here


500ml Tempura Batter (recipe below)

20 raw tiger prawns

Oil, to deep-fry

Corn flour, for dusting

70g unsweetened desiccated coconut


1 ripe mango, medium size

½ ripe papaya (ratio of mango and papaya should be 1:1)

1 red onion, thinly sliced

Juice of 1 lime

1.5 tbsp red wine vinegar

1-2 tbsp castor sugar

Some sliced chili (optional)


  1. Prepare the tempura batter. Chill properly.
  2. For the salsa: peel and deseed the fruits. Cut into 1cm cubes. Combine the fruits with the rest of the ingredients in a mixing bowl and stir gently. Cover and place the salsa in the fridge to chill for at least 30 mins.
  3. Remove head and jackets of the prawns (save for making stock). Slit each prawn along its back and lift out the intestinal thread.
  4. Heat oil to 180C. Place flour and desiccated coconut in separate dishes. Remove the cold batter from the fridge.
  5. Dip the prawn in the flour, batter, then roll in coconut before frying. Fry until golden. Drain on kitchen towel.
  6. Serve immediately with fruit salsa.

Tempura Batter – halve the recipe for the prawn tempura

500ml ice-cold water, 1 egg yolk, 40g corn flour, 250g self-raising flour, a pinch of salt

Whisk egg yolk into the water. Add flour to the water (not the other way around). Gently whisk ingredients together until the batter has consistency of double cream. It is ok to have lumps since they make the tempura crispier. Place the batter in the fridge for 30 mins to set and chill.

46 Responses to Tropical Paradise

  1. Lydia says:

    Those prawns are beautiful!

  2. Andaliman says:

    Do you still have some for me please? ^_^

  3. Manggy says:

    I don’t have a doubt that it’s good! I’m even salivating at the relish. Long live seafood!

  4. Rasa Malaysia says:

    Fantastic, so beautiful and I am sure they were delish. I love shrimp a lot and I will bookmark this so I can make them in the future…and enjoy your summer down under. :)

  5. Cindy. Lo. says:

    My god, they looked awesome,

  6. Peabody says:

    Oh yeah! I love prawns, and these look fantastic…thanks for coming to the party!!!

  7. tigerfish says:

    I want to make seafood all seasonal for myself! This is so good on its own *munching…munching* oops…excuse me while i do the greedy thing *munching munching munching*

  8. Dhanggit says:

    what a lovely concoction: tempura with coconut accompanied by mango salsa..its definitely a tropical paradise! fantastic photos too, i will definitely try this recipe

  9. Anh says:

    Lydia, thanks. They were very fresh, too.

  10. Katie says:

    Wow, that looks absolutely amazing! Those prawns are GORGEOUS!

  11. Maryann@FindingLaDolceVita says:

    I would love this dish :)

  12. Rachel says:

    Now that is delectable!

  13. veron says:

    prawns are my favorite seafood. I forced myself to conquer my fear of deep frying so I can make tempura. Your coconut prawns are so mouthwatering.

  14. nicisme says:

    This photo is brilliant! I’m so glad I found your blog – I am going to have a wonderful time looking through your recipes.

  15. Meeta says:

    Simply delish. I love pairing it with that fruity salsa! Gorgeous!

  16. Bellini Valli says:

    These prawns would be delicious Anh!!! Some with mango salsa please?????

  17. Graeme says:

    I really don’t like Seafood, Anh, but I can certainly appreciate it’s greatness.

  18. ilingc says:

    Anh, my my what good looking prawns! I love how you’ve used dessicated coconut with the flour I bet they were nice and crunchy!

  19. Asha says:

    Coconut Prawns look delicious! Enjoy. Happy Thanksgiving, see you on Monday!:))

  20. Deborah says:

    I absolutely love coconut prawns! Yum!!

  21. Patricia Scarpin says:

    I would eat some of these and do not care for my allergy – that’s how great they look , Anh!

  22. Cookie baker Lynn says:

    I love prawns and the mango papaya salsa looks like the perfect complement.

  23. winedeb says:

    Being south like we are, I have shrimp at least once a week. The coconut is a great idea! I must try next week. Beautiful salsa to accompany!

  24. maybahay says:

    those are gorgeous prawns. love the salsa, so fresh and summery. will try this one, for sure.

  25. Anh says:

    Katie, they are local prawns, big and juicy! A bit $$$ but worth it :D

  26. Susan says:

    Those look fabulous! I love coconut on prawns!

  27. Kevin says:

    Coconut prawn tempura sounds great! The salad looks tasty as well.

  28. Sandeepa says:

    Mmmmmmmmmmmm beautiful prawns. Where is the lamb biryani…wanted to see it…with your shots it must have been real glam

  29. bee says:

    whoa!!! that is some serious food porn.

  30. Elle says:

    This dish is a ray of sunshine in a November cold day (here) and looks delicious!

  31. Precious Moments says:

    aiyo, these are definitely my favourite minus the coconut (wink)

  32. Freya and Paul says:

    A delicious way to bring a little sunshine into these gloomy days (in the UK anyway!)!

  33. The Expedited Writer says:

    THis looks scrumptious, Anh. I’m imagining sinking my teeth into those succulent prawns just about now while still hung over your mussel mariniere …:)

  34. Callipygia says:

    I have a weakness for tempura with sweet and sour sauce, coconut and seafood. This is a winner!

  35. pleasurepalate says:

    The vibrant colors of your coconut shrimp really caught my eye on Tastespotting plus the dish just looks so tasty!

  36. Nora B. says:

    Hi Anh, I have you are bringing lots to the party because I will be having more than one!

  37. ilingc says:

    Hi Anh,

  38. neil says:

    Mmm, mm, mm. They look great, I can just taste your coconut addition, lovely. Don’t invite me along…there’ll be none left!

  39. Aimée says:

    Beautifully done and presented! Keep the seafood coming.

  40. Tartelette says:

    My favorite way to eat prawns. Love it! Thanks for reminding me that I have all the ingredients necessary in the house!

  41. Amanda at Little Foodies says:

    These look beautiful and very very moreish.

  42. Margaret says:

    Thank you for visiting my foodblog. I am so pleased that you did, now I have discovered lots of beautiful food and photographs. My husband will love having a look this evening! Mx

  43. Everything4sweets says:

    Beautiful picture and looks so delicious also

  44. East Meets West Kitchen says:

    Those prawns took my breath away! Looks fabulous!

  45. Cynthia says:

    This combo is always a winner. I made it one Christmas wanting to serve something different and it disappeared as fast as it was put on the table.

  46. Gretchen Noelle says:

    These prawns look delicious. Tempura anything is a weakness of mine!

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