Shrimp in Coconut Milk (Chingri Maacher Malai Curry)

This is a popular dish from the East Indian state of Bengal. Serve with basmati rice.

Serves: 4Hands-on: 30 minutesTotal: 30 minutesDifficulty: Medium

Serves: 4


  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 tsp. cumin seeds
  • 1 cinnamon stick (1”)
  • 2 cloves
  • 4 black peppercorns
  • 1” piece fresh gingerroot, peeled and sliced
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • Water, as needed
  • 3 Tbsp. vegetable oil
  • 1 large red onion, minced
  • ½ tsp. turmeric powder
  • 1 lb. shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 1 can (14 oz.) light coconut milk
  • Table salt, to taste


  • In a spice grinder, roughly grind the bay leaf, cumin seeds, cinnamon stick, cloves, peppercorns, ginger, and garlic. Add 1 tablespoon of water if needed.
  • In a medium-sized skillet, heat the vegetable oil. Add the ground spice mixture and sauté for about 1 minute. Add the onions and sauté for 7 to 8 minutes or until the onions are well browned.
  • Add the turmeric and mix well. Add the shrimp and sauté for about 2 to 3 minutes, until no longer pink.
  • Add the coconut milk and salt. Simmer for 10 minutes or until the gravy starts to thicken. Remove from heat and serve hot.