Era varuval (tiger prawns fry)

One of our families most favourite, tasty, scrumptious and delicious is era varuval (in Tamil) or Jhinga fry (king prawns fry). My husbands and every bodies favourite, who love seafood for them, is Era varuval (king Prawns fry). In each house they do it differently with the spices. We have to be careful while cooking Era varuval (Jhinga fry), as we have to do roasting, it can take time also to give that roasting colour, and if we overcook the prawns can become rubbery. In this Era varuval , we have to cook first gravy, and then add the prawns at last and then roasted till all the liquid is dry. This is done to avoid prawns to get rubbery, as it takes few minutes to cook, but frying and roasting involves more time, so first rawness of spices (ingredients) I have removed by cooking gravy, but it should be little enough to cook the prawns, more liquid should not be there.

In any frying dish, oil usage is more as, we are roasting it, oil is needed, but it is up to you to use or avoid it. For frying or roasting or any dry dishes I use kadai(wok type), in which we can scrape and stir well, but not in non-stick, but you can use non-stick to avoid oil. In this era varuval I have used simple ingredients and easy to cook.

In my mother’s place and in my mother in laws house also, we serve Jhinga fry with rasam and plain rice or any dal from my recipes we serve. This Jhinga fry is different from my previous Jhinga fry, as in this I have used different ingredients from the other ingredients, but cooking method is the same can refer my previous Jhinga fry. For frying I always buy big prawns or medium size prawns, as for roasting it will take more time and prawns tastes more delicious.



  1. Big prawns or king prawns – 500 gms
  2. Chilli powder – 1 tsp
  3. Ginger and garlic paste – 2 tsp
  4. Saunf (fennel) powder – 1/4 tsp
  5. Pepper powder – 1/2 tsp
  6. Salt - as per taste
  7. Frying

  8. Oil – 1/4 cup
  9. Onion (big or medium) – 1
  10. Curry leaves – 15
  11. Ginger and garlic paste – 1 1/2 tsp
  12. Turmeric powder – 1/4 tsp
  13. Chilli powder – 2 tsp
  14. Saunf – 1 1/2 tsp
  15. Pepper powder – 1 1/2 tsp
  16. Garam masala – 1 tsp
  17. Lemon juice – 1 tbsp
  18. Water – 3/4 cup
  19. Salt – as required
  20. Green chillies (slit) – 4
  21. Coriander leaves (chopped) – 1/3 cup
  22. Curry leaves (for garnishing) - 10 or few


  1. I have used the head of the prawns also, which I have cleaned and added in the marinate. You can ask the fish monger to clean for you or you can discard the head shell or used it for making prawn stock.
  2. Marinate the prawns with all the spices and refrigerate for 2hrs to 5hrs or overnight also.
  3. Chop onion, tomatoes and coriander leaves, keep it ready.
  4. Cut the chilli vertically long sides, like julienne shapes or carrot sticks.
  5. Before cooking, remove from the fridge, bring it to normal temperature for 1/2hr.
  6. First take a vessel or kadai, add 1/3 cup of oil, when hot add sliced onion, cook until it is soft and transparent.
  7. Add ginger and garlic paste, stir for 30sec, then add chilli powder, turmeric powder ,saunf 1 tsp, 1/2 cup water and curry leaves. Cook for a few minutes until its rawness goes off and oil starts leaving. Cook on medium flame.
  8. When the liquid is reduced and forms like gravy (curry) consistency, add the prawns and water 1/3rd cup again (if needed), mix well, and cook till it forms like thick curry base and the liquid starts absorbing.
  9. Add suanf 1/2tsp again and pepper powder 1tsp, with green chillies, mix well and cook for few minutes, keep stirring in between, there will be suace.
  10. When almost all the liquid is absorbed and there is just a thick masala coating to the prawns, add oil 11/2tbsp around the kadai and start stirring it well, as all the liquid is dry and it has to be roasted well.
  11. Add coriander leaves, few curry leaves, garam masala, saunf powder a pinch again and pepper powder 1/2tsp, mix well, simmer the flame and stir well . At this stage you can decide whether to switch off or to roast more. As you keep roasting, the colour also starts changing from the lighter to darker colour.
  12. Drizzle little more oil 2tsp , if needed, around the corners and stir well, without damaging the prawns, either on medium or simmer flame, until the roasting colour comes on the prawns, as per your taste and colour. As I love to keep some masala with the prawns which is attached to the prawns, it tastes delicious.
  13. If the masala is sticking to the bottom scratch it nicely and stir it well.
  14. When the prawns are fried (roasted well as per your requirement) , switch it off, garnish with few coriander leaves.
  15. Serve it with plain rice and rasam or any dal, tastes delicious.


  1. In this, we have to roast at medium flame and then at simmer, as it can burn also, and stir often. Don’t cook much on simmer flame as it can leave liquid and again it can become curry type.
  2. Add the prawns, when the liquid is reduced and forms like thick gravy, as when the prawns are added, it starts leaving water.
  3. Can adjust with the spiciness according to your taste.
  4. It is up to you, how much the prawn has to be roasted and oil to be added in between and switch it off.
  5. My favourite part is to put some white rice and mix with the left over masala, in the kadai and having it with a drizzle of lemon juice on it, which tastes the best.