Makes six appetisers
Snacké in French means briefly fried, and these caramelised, nutty, lime-licked prawns could not be quicker or more delicious with a chilled glass of sweet wine.
The lime of choice here is the knobbly kaffir, or makrut, also called combava, knobbly of hide and fragrantly astringent of demeanour. It's more usually the leaves that are used in cooking and the whole fruit is hard to track down unless you have a specialist south-east Asian grocer nearby. If not, use a regular lime and half a lemon, the juicier the better. Have an extra lime on hand as a garnish.
It's good to have a handy bag of frozen king prawns, déjà-shelled and deveined, in the freezer for occasions like this. Shake out a dozen of them and defrost these overnight in the fridge. Give them a good rinse and pat dry.
Thread two prawns on each of six mini wooden skewers that will fit into a smallish, but deepish frying pan and cook evenly in the liquid.
Now for said liquid: zest your lime, and then juice both it and the lemon half. Drizzle a couple of heaped dessertspoons of clear honey into the pan and add the citrus juices. Let it all bubble up ferociously and lay the skewers in the pan, so that the prawns come fully into contact with the boiling liquid.
Cook for a couple of minutes until they begin to turn pink and opaque, then turn over carefully with a pair of kitchen tongs and give them the same on the other side.
Transfer to a plate, and spoon the pan juices delicately over them, turning them to coat. Do this quickly before the honey begins to seize up.
While the prawns are still hot and sticky, sprinkle them with sesame seeds and the reserved lime zest. Serve with lime wedges to squeeze over.
> Serve with a glass of Sauternes or Barsac.
Janet Wynne Evans