Prawn curry with posto

November 14, 2008
This curry with prawns is cooked with posto  paste. It is one of delicacies of Eastern India. White poppy seeds paste has a mild flavor and imparts a creamy texture to the gravy.


Just last night I saw the moon in its most glorious state bright as a diamond, dazzling and making its way through the dark ominous clouds as I stepped outside to dump my garbage bag and looked up and saw the vibrant full moon. It made me nostalgic as I remembered the beautiful stories of the moon that my grandma told me as I and my brother lay on her laps and looked up at the bright starry sky during the mid summer holidays of our school days. So much passes away and yet some things remain permanently etched in our memories.

I ran inside to get my camera & capture the moment before it got shrouded amongst the clouds like another story ending abruptly because we fell asleep on her lap before she could complete it. Although it was a clear sky with only few patches of cloud scattered and strangely around the moon as if it was a divine make over for the moon to shine & show itself in all its glory. I zoomed my lens and clicked away to preserve this beautiful moment. I later realized that it was purnima the full moon day & non other than Kartika Purnima. This day holds a very significant event in the Oriya calendar. The whole month of kartika that starts from middle of October and ends somewhere in the middle of November on the full moon day. During this period devotees refrain from eating non vegetarian food. After purnima we celebrate the next day with new clothes & feasting ourselves and preparing delicacy that includes fish, poultry and meat.

Staying in China and with a over fussy son we could not strictly follow the rituals but back in my home state our families always observe this particular period with true spirit. I remember when we were young we used to visit Puri the holy land of lord Jaganath on this day. The grandeur of the temple would get multiplied with the chanting of the auspicious mantras by the ardent devotees and is an absolutely mesmerizing moment. My dad used to wait till the sunset and watch the evening kirtans (prayers) that was spell bounding. My grandma would give us a few rupees each to spend on the sweet meats around the temple and very often we would end up eating ice lollies that seemed to have been the gifts from the god.

On this special day I am going share a recipe of prawn cooked with poppy seeds paste. It is one of delicacies of Eastern India. White poppy seeds paste has a mild flavor and imparts a creamy texture to the gravy.



20 Prawns shelled and de veined
1 large potato boiled and cubed
½ cup onion chopped
1 teaspoon garlic paste
1 teaspoon ginger paste
1 medium tomato chopped
2 teaspoon poppy seeds (khus khus)
1 teaspoon coriander powder
1 teaspoon cumin powder
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon turmeric powder
1 teaspoon Garam masala
1 tablespoon fresh cream
Salt to taste
2 tablespoon oil


Heat I tablespoon oil in pan. Sauté the prawns for couple of minutes. Sprinkle salt and pinch of turmeric. Remove and keep it aside.

Use the same pan and add rest of the oil. Fry the onions till translucent and add garlic and ginger paste. Sauté the onions till they are cooked and then add chopped tomatoes and dry masalas excluding gram masala. Keep stirring it on a medium fire till the paste is cooked well and you can see the oil oozing out.

Blend the dry poppy seeds and then add 3 to 4 tablespoon of water to make a paste. Add the paste to the above masala and stir for 2 to 3 minutes. Finally add prawns and potatoes. Keep stirring on medium fire and add ¾ cup of water. Cover and simmer for 5 to 7 minutes till the gravy is thickened. Garnish it with cream, garam masala and coriander and serve hot with rice.



Taking this opportunity may I also silently pray for all of us that we find lasting happiness & peace in what ever we do and where ever we are.


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  • Reply Sharmila November 14, 2008 at 1:21 pm

    Isn’t Kartik purnima the same time when people wake up very early and float boats in pond/rivers?Or am I confusing it with something else?
    The snap of the moon is beautiful.
    Have never tried prawns with posto .. must add it to my ‘must try’ list.
    I say Amen to your last line.:-)

  • Reply Uma November 15, 2008 at 2:07 am

    Please visit my place for a treat:


  • Reply Divya Vikram November 15, 2008 at 2:07 am

    I am just sitting in awe seeing your beautiful pics!

  • Reply Curry Leaf November 15, 2008 at 2:07 am

    Lovely post with very good moon pic.It is celebrated in the south as well.We used to keep diyas outside in the evenings and it looked like mini Diwali.The dish and presentaion is great and I would try with potatoes and other veggies.Lovely

  • Reply Soma November 15, 2008 at 2:07 am

    U stirred up a lot of memories. Such simple things which had been so much a part of life, now brings a pang of pain for me for some unknown reason, as if those were the days very long again & i cannot touch them anymore.

    Prawn is the love of my life, but never had it with poppy seeds. Need to try this.

  • Reply Priya November 15, 2008 at 2:07 am

    WOwoww…eyecatching recipe..prawns looks delicious, fabulous..am drooling now here…completely new for me…I have something for u in my blog..pls check it out..

  • Reply Cham November 15, 2008 at 2:07 am

    I even captured the moon yest 🙂 Ah nowadays everything is trapped under my camera… The moon should be happy , right?
    I am a big seafood eater, now totally reduce to 95%… This shrimp is just creamy and luxurious looking, want me to try soon…

  • Reply Happy cook November 15, 2008 at 2:07 am

    Hey we too had full moon yesterday 🙂
    This is one really delicious prawn dish. Looks really yummy.
    Am bookmarking to make them.

  • Reply Yasmeen November 15, 2008 at 2:07 am

    Magneficient Shot of the full moon! I too miss the Nani ki kahaniyaan and the star gazzing 🙂
    Tasty masala prawns with khus-khus and rice is making me hungry.Thanks for you thoughtful prayer.A surprise for you in my blog:)

  • Reply Fearless Kitchen November 15, 2008 at 2:07 am

    This looks very tasty. I don’t think I’ve had anything with white poppy seed paste before.

  • Reply Daziano November 16, 2008 at 2:31 am

    This recipe looks very interesting and I love the photos! And I’m impressed with the moon story! Nice!

  • Reply mona November 16, 2008 at 2:31 am

    Lovely presentation! Yes, so much happens but some things stay etched in our minds. That is so amazing. Don’t you think?
    I would love to prepare have some of this delicious looking prawn curry. Seafood is my weakness 🙂

  • Reply Srivalli November 16, 2008 at 2:31 am

    oh my lovely pictures…really tempting!

  • Reply SriLekha November 16, 2008 at 2:31 am

    wow stunning pics and yummy dish

  • Reply Jo November 18, 2008 at 12:47 am

    This looks really, really delicious and I simply love the way you have plated it. Beautiful photos.

  • Reply Clumbsy Cookie November 18, 2008 at 12:48 am

    What a wonderful moon and wonderful dish! Both beautiful and magical!

  • Reply Jaya November 18, 2008 at 12:48 am

    I just love the moon Pic and Prawn curry looks yummm…
    hugs and smiles

  • Reply raaji November 18, 2008 at 5:12 am

    The moon looks so beautiful…..what a perfect thing to have on sucha day…..

  • Reply Sujatha November 19, 2008 at 5:20 am

    Fantastic shot of the full-moon! Shrimp looks tasty and perfect.. I love your dinner set.. and that amazing presentation 🙂

  • Reply Sagarika April 18, 2009 at 12:38 am

    Wow. Love the recipe. Your descriptions of your time at Puri temple and story time with grandma have made me very nostalgic. Photo of moonlit night in China is very beautiful. Used to have fun on kartik purnima floating boats.

  • Reply ~ PragyaN ~ April 2, 2016 at 11:17 pm

    reached your blog while doing some random surf n halted here as the pic of the beautiful full moon forced me! your memories of Kartik Purnima took me down the memory lane of childhood days @ Puri.

    By the way, this dish of prawn looks yummy! am gonna keep a watch on this blog now onwards to learn some mouth watering delights 🙂

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