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Steamed Prawns with Garlic and Fermented Beancurd

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Way back many years ago, after tasting my mother-in-law’s steamed garlic prawns, I instantly fell in love of it, that’s totally different from the populated version.

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Without any hesitation, I asked my mother-in-law to teach me. I couldn’t imagine how easy it is to make this dish. Not very long, I took the trick back to my kitchen and replicated my mother-in-law’s dish for my daughter to run a taste test.

Then guess what’s after? After that taste test, whenever my daughter sees me preparing some prawns, she would ask if I’m going to make this dish and wants to taste again.

I’m so glad that her western palate also loves this unique Chinese dish. Best of all, she feels it’s comparatively easy to peel the shells on her own.

How To Make Steamed Garlic Prawns
Top left: fermented beancurd

Steamed Prawns with Garlic and fermented Beancurd Recipe (Printable recipe)

Prep time:
Cook time:
Yield: 2 to 3 serves

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  • 10 prawns, frozen or fresh
  • 1 piece fermented beancurd, or to taste
  • 1½ tsp minced garlic
  • spring onion, diced, for garnish

  1. Thaw the prawns if they are frozen. Rinse thoroughly and pat dry. Use a pair of scissors to cut the shells along the back of the prawns as it will help cut the flesh much easier. Then use a knife to make an incision by cutting the flesh about three-quarters of the way into prawn flesh, from the head to nearly all the way down to the tail. Remove the vein. Open the flesh and slightly press to flatten.
  2. With a spoon, mash the fermented beancurd into a paste. Combine with garlic. Evenly spoon the mixture onto the incision of each prawn.
  3. Steam the prawns in a wok over high heat for about 8 to 10 minutes, depending on the size of your prawns. When the prawn shells become orange-red and the flesh turns white, it’s done. Don’t ever over cook them. Or else the flesh gets tougher. Sprinkle diced spring onion for garnish. Serve immediately.

  • I briefly sautéed half of the minced garlic in hot oil to bring up more fragrance and decrease its pungent taste. Then I combined it with the raw minced garlic. This garlic mix makes the prawn flesh even taste better.


  1. I have EVERYTHING for this delicious prawn recipe! Gotta make this for the weekend lunch. Thanks for sharing, Christine.

    1. Hi Angie, hope you like this dish as much as we do.

  2. This is delicious!