I love spicy and sweet-and-sour salads!

All Thai salads are notable for their distinct flavours and freshness. They are a lively assemblage of herbs, spices and fruits.

In this salad the prawns are freshly cooked and therefore warm, the dressing is strong which unifies the hot and cold ingredients.


  • 500g raw King Prawns, peeled and deveined, head and tails intact
  • 2 tablespoons Thai roasted red chilli paste
  • 1 medium size Keiffer pear, thinly sliced, use a Mandolin if you have one
  • 1 handful of coriander leaves, torn
  • 1 handful mint leaves
  • 1 handful Thai basil leaves
  • 4 Kaffir lime leaves, finely sliced
  • 4cm lemongrass stalk, white part only, very finely sliced
  • 2 small shallots, finely sliced or 4 red Asian shallots.

Ingredients for the Dressing

  • 2 tablespoons of sugar, or 2 tablespoons of palm sugar
  • 2 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 3 tablespoons lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon Thai roasted red chilli paste, you can add more if you want your salad more spicy.
  • 1 bird’s eye chilli, sliced


  • Put the prawns in a mixing bowl, add the chilli paste, stir to coat them well. Let them marinate for 1 hour or overnight.
  • Combine dressing ingredients in a bowl and stir until the sugar is dissolved.
  • Heat a chargrill pan or BBQ chargrill to medium-high. Cook the prawns for 2 to 3 minutes on each side until golden brown and cooked through.
  • Add the prawns to a mixing bowl with coriander leaves, mint leaves, Thai basil leaves, thinly sliced kaffir lime leaves, lemongrass, shallots and sliced pear.
  • Then add the dressing. Toss well and transfer to a plate to serve.


  • When seasoning a dressing, sweet ingredients are usually added before the souring agents. The fish sauce is generally added last.
  • If you have palm sugar use it instead of ordinary sugar this will make the dressing burst in flavour!
  • Once you add the dressing you must serve the salad immediately or the leaves will wilt.

In the above video you can hear the prawns sizzling away and the distinctive sounds of Australian birds!

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