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Piri piri prawns with mango and padrón peppers

Prep time
5 mins
Cooking Time
35 mins


msc ecolabel landscape
  • 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 300g / 10oz / 1¼ cups rice
  • 600g / 1lb 5oz MSC certified raw king prawns (jumbo shrimp), peeled, heads and tails left on and deveined
  • 1 tbsp paprika
  • 1 onion, roughly chopped
  • 2 chillies (chiles), finely sliced
  • 1 mango, peeled and flesh diced
  • 2 limes
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 6 sprigs of coriander (cilantro), leaves pulled from stalks
  • 20g / ¾ oz / 1½ tbsp butter
  • 300g / 10oz padron peppers
  • groundnut (peanut) oil, for frying
  • light olive oil, for frying
  • salt and pepper
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The MSC blue fish tick


We all think Piri Piri comes from Portugal but originally it was the Portuguese who brought it from Mozambique to America. ‘Piri’ meaning ‘chilli’ in Swahili. But in Mozambique they make piri piri dishes sweeter by adding mango to the base which gives a perfect spicy sweetness to the butterflied prawns (shrimp).

  1. Heat a little groundnut (peanut) oil in a saucepan and sauté 1 clove of finely chopped garlic for 2–3 minutes without letting it brown.
  2. Add the rice and stir for 30 seconds and then pour in enough cold water to come 1cm / ½ inch above the rice.
  3. Bring to the boil, cover the pan and simmer for 10 minutes, by which time the rice should have absorbed all the water.
  4. Take the pan off the heat and, with the lid left on, leave the rice to stand for 10 minutes.
  5. Butterfly the prawns (shrimp) by cutting them open lengthwise but without cutting them completely in half. Sprinkle the prawns with the paprika and set aside.
  6. Heat a little groundnut oil in another pan and fry the remaining 3 cloves of garlic, onion and chilli (chile) for a few minutes until softened.
  7. Add the mango and the juice of half a lime. Stir well and fry for another 2–3 minutes.
  8. Tip the contents of the pan into the bowl of a blender or food processor, add the olive oil and liquidize or process until smooth. Season with salt.
  9. Heat 2 tablespoons of light olive oil and the butter in a frying pan (skillet) over a high heat. Fry the prawns until they are browned on all sides, turning them over every 30 seconds and taking care not to overcook them. Remove the prawns from the pan.
  10. Heat 2 tablespoons of light olive oil in a second frying pan and fry the padrón peppers for about 5 minutes, stirring and turning them over occasionally. Season with a pinch of salt.

Serving instructions

Serve the fried prawns with the sauce, garnished with the coriander (cilantro) leaves. Accompany with the padrón peppers, rice and any leftover limes served separately.

Photo credit: David Loftus

Recipes taken from Bart’s Fish Tales by Bart van Olphen, published by Pavilion Books.
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