It’s probably been months since you have decided to drop everything and board a flight to escape the hustle and bustle of life – that wanderlust must be eating you inside. If you’re an avid traveller that enjoys immersing yourself into the local culture, a must explore would be the delicacies served at the local market, particularly night markets. Quite often we may come across odd ones like fried creepy crawlies in Thailand and some are quite acceptable – like the cucur udang.
The cucur udang is a street snack commonly found in Singapore, Indonesia and of course, Malaysia. It serves as a great appetiser and a filler for tea time with a hot cup of teh tarik or coffee. It is best eaten hot and crispy with a side of chilli dip for that spicy twist with every bite.
- 250g small prawns
- 150g rice flour
- 50g all-purpose flour
- 200ml water
- 2 tsp baking powder
- ½ tsp chicken stock powder
- 3 tbsp oil
- 1 egg
- 1 bulb spring onions (sliced)
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp sugar
- 1 tsp pepper
- 50ml water
- 1 clove garlic (sliced into cubes)
- 1½ tsp chilli powder
- 1 tsp tapioca starch
- 2 tsp vinegar
- ¼ tsp salt
- 30g sugar
- Pour water into a pot and add ½ tsp salt before blanching the prawn for 1½ minutes. Drain and set aside.
Making Garlic Chilli Dip
- Add water, vinegar, salt, sugar, garlic and chilli powder and mix.
- Add the mixture to a saucepan and bring to boil over medium heat. Keep stirring until the sugar dissolves.
- Turn down to low heat and allow to simmer for 1-2 minutes while still stirring.
- Mix in the tapioca starch, 1 tbsp water and chilli sauce and stir until thickens.
- Slice the spring onions and mix with the rice flour, all-purpose flour and the rest of the ingredients.
- For the flour mixture, mix the rice flour, all-purpose flour, baking powder, salt, sugar, pepper and chicken stock.
- Add the oil to flour mixture followed by the egg and water before whisking until smooth and no visible lumps to form the batter before adding the spring onions.
Frying the Cucur Udang
- For the cucur udang, heat oil together with a stainless steel ladle or spatula to 160°C
- Scoop some batter and place a few prawns into that batter before submerging into the hot oil. Half-done fritter should slide into the oil.
- Fry until golden brown on both sides and repeat for all prawns.
- Serve with garlic chilli dip.
Tips for making Cucur Udang
It is common to find cucur udang with some vegetables as well. Some carrots (julienned), onions (sliced), red chillies, chives, and bean sprouts give your cucur udang some variety aside from a mere crispy seafood snack.
There are also some variants to the cucur udang such as crispy exterior but soft inside. Here you can add more all-purpose flour and reduce the rice flour content in the batter.
You can also thicken your dipping sauce by adding more tapioca starch to the mixture. No tapioca starch at home? Fret not, corn starch, potato starch or sweet potato starch would be viable options as well.