Chingri Malaikari

Subtle but rich in flavour, chingri malaikari—giant tiger/freshwater prawns cooked in creamy coconut-milk curry—is a Bengali treat.

  • Cooking time
    40 mins
  • Calories
Recommended by
members who rated this recipe on Youtube

Chingri malaikari is an iconic Bengali prawn curry made by cooking large tiger prawns (bagda chingri) or giant freshwater prawns (golda chingri) in a super-subtle, super-creamy coconut-milk sauce. Don’t be fooled by the elegant appearance of this well-loved Bengali treat—chingri malaikari is looks deceptively complicated to cook, when in reality it is easier to make than even chicken or egg curry!

The name of this chingri macher recipe bears somewhat of a double meaning. ‘Malai’ meaning ‘cream’ recalls the coconut-milk base in which the prawns are cooked. However, this prawn recipe seems to have made its way into Bengali kitchens through contact with Malaysian traders; so ‘malaikari’ is actually ‘Malay’ curry, over time transliterated as ‘malai’ curry.

In this detailed video we show you how to prepare a gorgeous, creamy chingri malaikari, starting from a walkthrough of how you can clean and devein giant tiger (bagda) or freshwater (golda) prawns. With this step by step recipe video at your disposal, there is no reason why you should hop over to you nearest Bhojohori Manna to satiate your chingri malaikari cravings!

Books in this recipe

No items found.
Like the work we do? Help keep this site ad-free by making a donation.


6 serveings
  • 1 kg bagda or golda chingri (giant tiger or freshwater prawns)
  • 50 g vegetable oil
  • 10 g ghee
  • 200 g onion paste
  • 20 g ginger paste
  • 4 g turmeric
  • 1 tsp kashmiri red chilli powder
  • 75 g yoghurt
  • 6 pcs green chillies
  • 300 g coconut milk (first-press)
  • 200 g coconut milk (second-press)
  • 24 g salt
  • 36 g sugar
  • ½ tsp bengali garam masala


  1. Shell and devein the prawns, leaving the flavourful head intact. You may remove the stomach of the prawn, located near its head. We are leaving the shells on, but you may peel them off if you like.
  2. Coat prawns with 1 tsp salt and ½ tsp turmeric powder, and set aside.
  3. In a grinder jar, add onions and blitz them to a fine paste. Also extract coconut milk, reserving the first-press (thick) and second-press (thinner) milk in separate jars, and keep it ready.
  4. Heat vegetable oil in a pan. Once hot, lower the prawns one by one, and fry them in batches for about 45 seconds on each side. The longer you cook prawns the tougher they’ll become, so remove them from the heat immediately and set aside.
  5. Now add ghee to the residual oil. Temper with dried red chillies, bay leaf, cardamom, cloves, and cinnamon.
  6. Add onion paste along with sugar, and fry for about 8 minutes until the onions are brown.
  7. Add ginger paste and fry for another 3–4 minutes, after which add turmeric and kashmiri red chilli powder. Stir intermittently so that the spices don’t stick to the bottom of the pan. When they do, add a splash of the thin, second-press coconut milk to loosen the mixture up and help fry it. Also add three slit green chillies and salt now.
  8. Once oil starts separating from the spices, beat the yoghurt until it is lump free and add it to the pan. Drop the heat and stir vigorously to prevent the yoghurt from splitting. Cook it for 3–4 minutes.
  9. Add the second-press (thin) coconut milk and simmer for about 2 minutes before adding the first-press (thick) coconut milk. Once it comes to a boil, add the fried prawns.
  10. Allow the prawns to bubble in the curry, covered, for no more than 5 minutes.
  11. Finish off with garam masala before serving.

Recipe discussion

Did this recipe help you cook something that made you happy?

At Bong Eats, we are working to standardise Bengali recipes, and present them to the world in a way that anyone, anywhere will be able to cook Bengali food with confidence—even if they have never tasted it before. We want the world to know that there is Indian food beyond tikka masala.

A lot of time and money goes into creating precise recipes such as this one. We don't want to depend on advertisements that track our viewers' activities through third-party cookies; we do not want take sponsorship money from companies that don't make subpar products.

You can help us make this a sustainable venture that can employ talented local writers, editors, photographers, recipe-testers, and more. Donate to keep us going.

Make a One-time donation

Help us keep Bong Eats free and open for everyone by making a one-time contribution. You can donate as much as you want. No amount is too little.

Become a member ⭐️

Join to get access to a vibrant private community of people who full of people who love to cook, feed and eat. Get answers to your questions about recipes, techniques, where to find ingredients from fellow members. If you love cooking, this is the place for you.

Monthly LIVE cookalongs
Shiny new private forum
Adda after every video release
Personalised recommendations
✨ See Membership Perks ✨

🧣 Winter 🫛

Bakes & Roasts

Posted on
December 21, 2023
Bong Eats

Winter is here. It is time to get baking. Here are some ideas, both savoury and sweet.

Read More »

✨ What's new?

View all »

Koi Komola

Koi fish cooked with fresh orange juice and seasonal tangerines.

  • 1 hour
  • 214
Viewers liked this

Kochur Loti Chingri diye

Taro stolons cooked with mustard and prawns

  • 90 mins
  • 170
Viewers liked this

Potoler Khosha Bata

A spicy, fudgy mash made of pointed gourd (potol) peels.

  • 60 mins
  • 90
Viewers liked this

Palong Shaak Bhaja

Stir-fried spinach

  • 30 mins
  • 79
Viewers liked this
See all New recipes »
View all »

Lau Chingri

This dry, curried bottle-gourd recipe is a family favourite, and can be cooked with or without the shrimp!

  • 60 mins
  • 154

Kakrar Jhal

Bengali crab curry with a twist

  • 90 minutes
  • 272

Prawn Cocktail

Prawns poached and coated with a sauce made of mayonnaise, ketchup, cream, Tobasco sauce, and Worcestershire sauce.

  • 30 minutes
  • kcal
View all »

Doi Begun

This brinjal recipe is quick and easy, perfect with luchi or steaming hot rice.

  • 40 mins
  • 173

Pressure-cooker Mutton Curry

Bengali mutton curry, cooked in a pressure cooker, with tender pieces of meat and potatoes, and a light, flavourful broth.

  • 2 hours
  • 653

Chhana'r Koftakari

Light, fluffy, mildly-spiced chhana (cottage cheese) dumplings in curry.

  • 90 minutes
  • 392