Baked tiger prawns with a homemade tomato sauce and cheddar cheese in a casserole make an irresistible appetizer you can have for lunch or dinner. Preparing the tiger prawns takes 10 minutes and baking the prawns with tomato sauce takes about 15 to 20 minutes. Which makes these baked tiger prawns a quick and easy party appetizer. Or even a potluck dish that looks amazing yet does not take much time and effort as it seems to be.
Why prawns with tomatoes and cheese?
Tiger prawns have a delicious buttery aftertaste that lingers in your mouth, leading to an unforgettable culinary experience if cooked the right way. They are naturally succulent and juicy, making them a great ingredient in a baked dish.
This recipe combines the tiger prawns with tomatoes and cheddar cheese making it even juicier and more delicious. As you can see, you don’t even need much cheese to get that creamy experience. The secret to the explosive flavor is the unique cilantro-tomato combination, apart from the tiger prawns, of course.
Health benefits of prawns
- Eating prawns provides a complete protein, which means it includes all nine amino acids in the right proportion for the body to function properly.
- Prawns are a great source of Vitamins B-6, B-12 and Niacin, which help the body produce energy, build muscle and replenish red blood cells.
- Prawns contain significant amounts of iron, a mineral that is essential for the body to effectively distribute oxygen.
- Prawns are a rich source of selenium, one of the most effective antioxidants at maintaining healthy cells.
- They also contain high levels of Zinc, which is important to develop a healthy immune system
- Eating prawns helps build strong bones because they contain phosphorous, copper and magnesium.
- Prawns are extremely low in calories.
- While prawns contain higher than average amounts of cholesterol, they do not lead to higher cholesterol levels in the body due to their healthy fat profile. This is because they contain almost three times more Omega 3 Fatty Acid than they do Omega 6 Fatty Acid. Studies have shown that foods with high amounts of Omega 3 are associated with reduced risk of heart attacks and lower blood pressure.
Can the baked tiger prawns be made ahead?
This simple recipe can be prepared within minutes, but can also be made ahead and refrigerated for a couple of days. It can also be easily multiplied for any number of people. These baked tiger prawns literally swimming in tomatoes and cheese are quite versatile, you can make them spicier or cheesier according to your preference.
What can I serve with the baked tiger prawns?
This casserole recipe is ideal as an appetizer for a weekend lunch or dinner or can be enjoyed hot and fresh with stir-fried red rice or easy frittata with brown rice on a winter night as comfort food. Or go for even healthier options like lemon garlic quinoa, 3-bean spicy quinoa or low carb coconut-flavored cauliflower rice.
Other easy prawn recipes you’ll love:
Ingredients for baked tiger prawns
- tiger prawns
- dry red chili or chili flakes
- sunflower oil
- cilantro, leaves and stalks
- grated cheddar cheese
How to make tiger prawns baked with tomatoes and cheese
Clean and devein the prawns, keeping the shells and tails intact. Cut slits along the length of the prawns on the inner side from head to tail, taking care not to cut through so that the prawns are still intact.
For the tomato paste, all you need are onions, tomatoes, chili, and peppercorns. Saute these ingredients in oil, cool and blend into a paste with cilantro stalks.
Place the tiger prawns in a greased casserole dish, cover with the tomato paste and sprinkle cheese and cilantro on top. Bake at 180 degrees C for 10 minutes, and you get a yummy cheesy appetizer to die for!
Baked tiger prawns with tomatoes and cheese
- 10 tiger prawns
- 2 onions diced
- 2 tomatoes diced
- 1 dry red chili or 1 teaspoon chili flakes
- 1 teaspoon peppercorns
- 2 teaspoons cooking oil
- 1 teaspoon butter
- 1/4 cup cilantro stalks chopped
- 1/4 cup loosely packed cilantro leaves chopped
- 2 tablespoons cheddar cheese
- salt to taste
- Remove head and claws from the prawns, keeping the shells and tails intact. Devein and wash. Cut slits along the length of the prawns on the inner side from head to tail, taking care not to cut through so that the prawns are still intact.
- Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius.
- Heat oil in a frying pan, saute the chili/flakes and onions for about 3 minutes, then add the tomatoes. Simmer until the tomatoes turn mushy for about 10 minutes. Cool the mixture and blend into a paste along with the cilantro stalks.
- Grease a casserole dish with butter and spread out the prawns in a single layer. Cover entirely with the tomato paste. Sprinkle cheddar cheese and cilantro on top.
- Bake for 10 minutes. Tiger prawns baked in tomatoes and cheese are ready to be served.
- The cilantro stalks with the tomatoes give a unique flavor to the baked prawns.
- If tiger prawns are not available, you can try this recipe with grey prawns though it may not be as delicious, since tiger prawns are the most suitable for this recipe.