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Grilled Head-on Prawns
with Greek Fava
Chef Jim Botsacos of Molyvos – New York, NY
Adapted by StarChefs
Yield: 4 Servings
- 20 whole prawns
- 1 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 3 cloves garlic, peeled and sliced
- 1 teaspoon dry Greek oregano
- 2 Tablespoon fresh parsley, chopped
- Zest of 2 lemons, finely grated
- Black pepper, freshly ground
- Coarse salt
- 1 1/2 cups yellow split peas, dried, sorted and stones removed
- Sachet (cheesecloth filled with seasonings and aromatics and
tied with kitchen string) containing ¼ onion, 4 cloves
smashed garlic, 2 bay leaves, and 5 whole peppercorns
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- Black pepper, freshly ground
- ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil, plus 4 tablespoons for
- 6 Tablespoons lemon juice, freshly squeezed
- ¼ cup scallions, chopped (white and green parts)
- 4 Tablespoons capers
- 1 cup arugula, chopped
Peel shells from prawns to expose the meat, starting beneath the
head and stopping just above the lowest portion of the tail.
To remove the veins, start at the base of the back of the head (where
the flesh and the head meet), run the tip of a paring knife down
to the lower portion of the tail, just to where it meets the shell.
Remove the black vein using the knife tip and scrape away any other
Rinse prawns under cold running water and drain on paper towels.
Transfer prawns to a glass or other non-reactive baking dish and
line them up side-by-side.
In a small mixing bowl, whisk together the oil, garlic, oregano,
parsley and zest. Pour over prawns, season with a few turns of freshly
ground black pepper, cover and refrigerate for at least 3 hours,
or preferably, overnight.
Prepare a charcoal grill to the white ash stage. Just before cooking,
remove prawns from refrigerator. Scrape marinade from the prawns
(your fingers are the best tool), allowing excess marinade to drip
back into the dish, and transfer prawns to a platter. Reserve marinade
Season prawns with salt and black pepper and place them on the grill.
Watch the flames; if you see them getting too high, move prawns
to a cooler spot on the grill. After 5 minutes, baste prawns with
reserved marinade and turn over. Continue cooking (and watching
flames) for another 3 minutes and baste again. After 2 minutes more,
remove prawns from grill. The total cooking time should be 10 minutes.
Serve 5 whole prawns per person with Greek Fava (recipe follows).
Cover split peas with 3¼ cups water. Bring water to a boil,
skim the impurities, and lower to a simmer. Add the sachet and cook
over low to medium heat for 40 minutes, or until the water evaporates
and peas thicken to a porridge. Add salt after 20 minutes. Stir
peas frequently to avoid burning. When they reach the right consistency,
remove pot from heat and set aside to cool slightly.
Note: As water evaporates, be careful not to scorch the bottom of
the pan. If the peas are not fresh, you may have to add water as
they cook to thicken peas to proper consistency, so check water
level during cooking.
Whip in ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil and 2 tablespoons lemon
juice. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Divide fava equally
among serving plates, mounding it in the center of the plate. Top
with scallions, capers, and prawns. Drizzle with remaining olive
oil and lemon juice. Scatter arugula on top and serve.
A refreshing Greek white like the Skouras Megas Oenos Moschofilero