Ching He Huang’s Sichuan sweet & sour prawns

This is a version of the Northern Chinese dish Guō Bāo Ròu, which coats the prawns in potato flour, before layering on a sweet and sour paste which is absorbed by the coating to make a deliciously sweet and sour crispy coating. 


For the sauce:

2 tsp cornflour

5 tbsp Heinz tomato ketchup

1 tbsp soft brown sugar

1 tbsp soy sauce


For the prawns:

1 medium egg, beaten

100g cornflour

Groundnut oil, for deep frying, plus 1 tablespoon

12 large raw tiger prawns, head and shell off, tail on, and deveined  

1 tbsp Sichuan peppercorns

5 cloves garlic, finely chopped

2.5 cm root ginger, peeled and grated

2 medium red chillies, deseeded and finely chopped

1 tbsp lime juice

2 salad onions, chopped at an angle into 2.5cm pieces

1 small handful of fresh coriander, finely chopped 


1. Combine all the ingredients for the sauce with 200 ml hot water in a heatproof jug and set aside.

2. For the prawns: put the egg, cornflour and about 1-2 tablespoons of water into a bowl and mix to make a batter.

3. Heat the groundnut oil in a wok set over a high heat.  Dip each prawn into the batter, and fry in the hot oil until golden – it’s best to do this in batches. Drain on absorbent kitchen paper.

5. Heat a small wok or pan over a high heat and when hot add the peppercorns and toast for 1 minute, crush in a pestle and mortar. Add 1 tbsp oil to the pan. As soon as the oil starts to smoke, add the Sichuan peppercorns, garlic, ginger and chillies, stir fry for a few more seconds.

6. Add the sauce you made earlier to the stir-fry pan and bring to the boil. Stir in the lime juice, salad onions and coriander and remove from the heat and coat over the prawns. Serve with rice - egg-fried rice makes a good match.

Recipe © Ching He Huang

  • Preparation time: 10 minutes
  • Cooking time: 10 minutes
  • Total time: 20 minutes

Serves: 2

3 stars

Average user rating Based on 18 ratings