Dry Shrimps (Jawla Prawns) in Spicy Indian Masala

Long back marriage and my husband’s job made me move to a coastal city, Mumbai. Among the many new things that I came across the dried prawns were one of them. For many years I hesitated buying them not knowing how to prepare. There has to be a ‘first time’ for everything and the same went for this.

Hesitatingly I did buy a pack of dry ‘jawla prawns’, as they are known here. These tiny prawns or shrimps are sun dried with salt on the sea beaches. Though efforts are taken to clean the shrimps before packaging traces of sand may be found sometimes. Hence they need a bit of cleaning before preparation. But this is a simple process. All we have to do is dry roast the prawns and transfer them to a sieve. The sieve will do the job of cleaning.

Dry roasting also renders a bit of crispiness to the shrimps enhancing the taste and experience.

Over the years, with repeated trials I finally hit upon the correct combination of masalas and cooking method to serve my family a version they liked.

Hope you too try it and if you like it please do leave behind a comment in the comment section.

Dry Shrimps (Jawla Prawn) in Spicy Indian Masala

Dry Shrimps (Jawla Prawn) in Spicy Indian Masala


  • Sun-dried small prawns (jawla prawn): 50 gm
  • Onion: 1 medium sized
  • Garlic: 7-8 cloves
  • Ginger: 1/2 inch piece
  • Turmeric: 1/2 tsp
  • Red chilli powder: 1/2 tsp
  • Coriander powder: 1 tsp
  • Garam masala powder: 1/4 tsp
  • Oil: 2-3 tbsp
  • Salt as per taste
  • Coriander to garnish


  1. Roughly cut the onion; peel the garlic and ginger.
  2. Grind the onion, garlic and ginger to a paste.
  3. Heat a heavy bottom wok or dish and dry roast the prawns.
  4. Roast till the prawn become a shade darker and sound crispy.
  5. Transfer prawns to a sieve and give it a good shake. All fine particle and any left over sand will be eliminated while sieving.
  6. In the same pan heat the oil.
  7. When the oil is hot enough add the onion, ginger, garlic paste.
  8. Add salt and cook till oil separates from the masala.
  9. Add turmeric, chilli powder and coriander powder.
  10. Cook for another five minutes.
  11. Add the prawns to the cooked masala and mix well.
  12. Add about 1/4 cup of water to allow the masala to evenly coat the prawns.
  13. Cover and cook for approximately 5-7 minutes.
  14. Remove lid and cook uncovered till the prawns a daily dry enough.
  15. Add the garam masala and mix well.
  16. Garnish with copped coriander leaves and serve hot with roti, paratha or naan.
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