Ebi mayo (shrimp or prawns dressed with mayo) is one of my favourite items at Izakaya or Japanese gastropub. Some places serve it with baked/pan fried shrimps while some uses crispy fried prawns. Since I love crispy things but don’t like deep frying at home, I tried to create this dish by baking the prawns with a crispy breadcrumb coating instead. It turned out much better than I thought. The double breaded prawns came out super crispy, you can even eat the tail! Best of all you only use a little bit of oil to toast the breadcrumbs and that’s it. It’s a much healthier alternative to the deep fried prawns.
Ingredients (makes 6 – 8 prawns):
- 1/2 cup panko (Japanese breakcrumbs)
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 3 tbsp flour
- 1 egg, beaten
- 6 – 8 tiger prawns (I use 26/30 sized prawns – ie. 26/30 prawns per pound)
- Japanese egg mayo (or regular mayo)
- Japanese 7 spice (Shichimi Togarashi) – optional
- Hot sauce or chili garlic sauce – optional, add if you like spicy mayo
- In a frying pan over medium heat, add panko and drizzle olive oil on top. Use a spoon to mix the panko with the olive oil and toast the breadcrumbs until golden. Remove from heat and put into a shallow dish to cool to room temperature.
- Shell and devein the prawns but keep the tail on for nicer presentation. Then rinse with cold water and pat dry with a paper towel. Season the prawns with some salt and pepper on both sides.
- Preheat oven to 400F and line a baking tray with parchment paper. Set up your breading stations, with the flour in a small bowl, beaten egg in medium bowl, and lastly the panko in a third bowl.
- Working with one prawn at a time, hold the prawn by the tail and dust all sides with flour. Then tap the tail of the prawn lightly to remove excess flour. Dip the floured prawn into the beaten egg, making sure all sides are coated. Now roll the prawn in the panko to get as much breadcrumb on the prawn as possible. Dip this panko crusted prawn back in to the beaten egg, then roll it a second time in the panko. Place the panko crusted prawn on the prepared baking tray.
- When all prawns are breaded, place the tray in the preheated oven and bake for 10-13 minutes. If your prawn sizes are smaller you’ll need to reduce the baking time, or if it’s larger you’ll need to bake it longer. Mine took about 12 minutes.
- While the prawns are baking, prepare spicy mayo if using. I use 2 parts mayo and 1 part chili garlic sauce. You can adjust the ratio to your preference.
- To serve, you can drizzle the mayo on top of the prawns and dust it with the Japanese 7 spicy powder or drizzle the prawns with some spicy mayo. Alternatively you can put the mayo in a bowl for dipping. Serve immediately.