Grilled prawns with beans and shellfish oil

00. Matt Tebbutt recipe template

Preparation time

Cooking time
over 2 hours

Serves 2


By Matt Tebbutt
From Saturday Kitchen


For the beans

  • 250g/9oz dried cannellini beans
  • 1 onion, roughly chopped
  • 1 stick of celery, roughly chopped
  • 6 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
  • 1 red chilli, roughly chopped
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 small bunch thyme
  • ¼ bulb of fennel, roughly chopped

For the prawns

  • 6 extra-large carabinero prawns (or other large raw prawns), peeled and deveined, heads and shells reserved

For the shellfish oil

  • 1 tbsp tomato purée
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1 banana shallot, finely chopped
  • 2 red chillies, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp sweet smoked paprika
  • 1 bay leaf
  • vegetable oil

To serve

  • 2 tbsp finely chopped chives
  • 1 red chilli, roughly chopped
  • squeeze lemon


  1. Soak the beans in plenty of water overnight. Strain and rinse before using.

  2. To make the shellfish oil, fry the reserved prawn heads and shells in a saucepan until crisp. Add the tomato purée, garlic, shallot, chillies, smoked paprika and bay leaf and cook until softened. Pour in enough vegetable oil to cover the ingredients and simmer for 2 hours. Strain and set aside.

  3. Meanwhile, to make the beans, place the soaked beans and all the other bean ingredients in a pan. Add enough water to cover and bring to the boil, skimming the scum off regularly. Simmer for 1–2 hours until tender. Add salt and olive oil to taste. Remove the vegetables and chop finely. Stir back into the liquor.

  4. Remove a cup of beans from the pan and set aside. Blend the remaining beans into a thick purée.

  5. Grill the prawns for a few minutes on both sides until cooked through. Remove and slice into small pieces. Place in a bowl and stir in some chopped chilli (to taste), shellfish oil, finely chopped chives and the reserved whole beans. Taste and season with salt and pepper.

  6. Spoon the bean purée onto a dish, top with the reserved beans and prawns. Drizzle over some more shellfish oil and lemon juice.