King Prawn Butterfly

  • Author: Michelle Minnaar
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 4 1x


This King Prawn Butterfly is the perfect starter/canapé to any meal. Make this classic Indian starter recipe at home today!



  • 12 king prawns
  • 1 egg, whisked
  • 150g (5oz) panko crumbs
  • 60g (2oz) gram flour
  • 2.5cm (½ tsp) curry powder
  • 2.5cm (½ tsp) chilli powder
  • 2.5cm (½ tsp) ground ginger
  • 5ml (1 tsp) garlic granules
  • Salt and pepper, to taste


  1. Remove the head of the prawn.
  2. Using a sharp knife, make an incision down the centre of the shell on the back of the prawn and take out the black vein.
  3. Remove the shell but leave the tail intact. 
  4. Flatten the prawn lightly, and repeat the process with the rest of the prawns.
  5. Whisk the egg with the curry powder, chilli, ginger and garlic. Season.
  6. Place the flour and panko on two respective plates. 
  7. Heat the oil in a large saucepan or deep fryer. Test the oil by dropping a bit of batter in it. It should sizzle immediately.
  8. Dip the prawn into the egg batter, then cover with flour, and lastly with panko. 
  9. Lower the prawn with a spatula into the oil and fry until browned, crisp and cooked through. Remove the prawn with a spatula or tongs. Drain on a kitchen towel.
  10. Repeat the process with all the prawns.
  11. Serve with salad and a sweet chilli dip. Pakora sauce works too! Enjoy!


  • The size of the prawns affect the cooking time. Smaller prawns might only take 2 minutes while bigger ones will take longer.
  • Don’t overcrowd the saucepan with prawns because it will lower the temperature of the oil and cook unevenly. Do it in batches instead.
  • Category: Starter
  • Method: Deep Fry
  • Cuisine: Indian

Keywords: king prawn butterfly recipe, indian king prawn butterfly, king prawn starter, indian starter recipe