Udang Masak Lemak Nenas: Prawn and Pineapple Curry

In the rich tapestry of Malaysian cuisine, a dish that exquisitely marries the sweetness of fruit with the savory depth of curry stands out: Udang Masak Lemak Nenas, or Prawn and Pineapple Curry. This delightful concoction originates from the Malay culinary tradition, where “masak lemak” refers to cooking in a creamy, spiced coconut milk base. Prawns serve as the succulent centerpiece, while chunks of pineapple add a juicy, tangy twist that cuts through the creaminess, creating a harmonious blend of flavors. This dish is not just a treat for the taste buds but is also visually arresting with its vibrant colors, making it a festive choice for any occasion.

Udang Masak Lemak Nenas: Prawn and Pineapple Curry


  • 500g large prawns, shelled and deveined
  • 1 ripe pineapple, cut into bite-sized chunks
  • 400ml coconut milk
  • 1 small onion, finely sliced
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 lemongrass stalk, bruised
  • 3 kaffir lime leaves, torn
  • 2 red chillies, sliced (adjust to taste)
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt (adjust to taste)
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar (adjust to taste)
  • 2 tablespoons cooking oil
  • A handful of fresh coriander leaves for garnish (optional)

Cooking Steps

  • Heat the oil in a deep pan or wok over medium heat. Sauté the onions and garlic until they become translucent and fragrant.
  • Add the turmeric powder and red chillies, cooking for a minute until the spices release their aroma.
  • Stir in the prawns and cook until they start to turn pink.
  • Mix in the pineapple chunks, lemongrass, and kaffir lime leaves, and stir well to combine with the prawns and spices.
  • Pour in the coconut milk, then bring the mixture to a gentle boil. Reduce the heat and allow it to simmer for about 5 minutes or until the prawns are fully cooked.
  • Season with salt and sugar according to your taste preferences.
  • Once the curry has thickened slightly and the flavors have melded together, remove from heat.
  • Garnish with fresh coriander leaves before serving, if desired.
  • Enjoy your Udang Masak Lemak Nenas with a side of steamed rice or your favorite accompaniments.

The enchanting fusion of prawns and pineapple in Udang Masak Lemak Nenas not only offers a celebration of flavors but also presents a nutritious meal option. Prawns are a great source of protein, while pineapples provide vitamin C and enzymes that aid digestion. When selecting ingredients, always opt for fresh prawns with a firm texture and a bright color, as they are the cornerstone of this dish. For the pineapple, choose one that smells sweet at the base, indicating ripeness and the promise of its natural sugars to complement the creamy curry. With each bite of this delightful dish, you’ll taste the essence of Malaysian warmth and hospitality.

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