Prawns are a large member of the crustacean family. When alive, they are a dark mottled blue in colour, and when they are cooked, they turn a bright orange/pink colour. In some nations, prawns are referred to as shrimp, especially in the United States. King prawns are considered to be one of the best types of prawn, as they are larger, juicier and sweeter than their smaller counterparts. Prawns can be cooked in a huge number of ways – steamed, simmered, baked, fried, griddled, grilled or BBQ'ed, and we have all sorts of prawn recipes below, including bacon wrapped prawns, prawn stuffed peppers and crispy coconut prawns.

Generally, it's considered that if you cook prawns when they are whole, you impart more flavour into the overall dish. However, it is more difficult to remove the outer casing of the prawn when it is cooked, and so it may be preferable for you to prepare the prawns before cooking them. You should always remove the "vein" of the prawn before serving it – the thin black line that runs down its spine, as this is the prawn's digestive tract.

To make an excellent fish stock, keep your prawn shells and bubble them up in water along with fish bones, celery, carrots and onions. You can easily freeze the stock for use later. If you're going to serve your prawns with the shells on, put out bowls of lemon water for your guests to clean their fingers with after eating.

We've got plenty of prawn recipes above to give you some inspiration for cooking these sweet little shellfish – a thick and spicy prawn stew, prawn ceviche, prawn rolls, herb and garlic marinated prawns and much, much more.