20 large (U-10 count) head-on spot prawns (1½ to 2 ounces each) (or substitute jumbo shrimp)
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 cup Toasted Garlic–Lemon Oil (see recipe list)
½ cup thinly sliced green onions 2 tablespoons ground sumac
Smoked sea salt, homemade or store-bought
With a sharp paring knife or pair of kitchen shears, make a shallow cut on the back of each spot prawn starting under the head and ending near the tail (do not remove the shells). Using your fingers, pry the cut open slightly and rinse under cold water, then pull out the dark digestive tract with your fingers or a toothpick.
Prepare a grill to high heat, leaving one area of the grill at low heat.
Season the prawns with salt and pepper and coat in oil. Place on a grill rack or in a grill basket if you have one, and transfer directly onto the hot coals or over the hottest part of the grill. Cook until the prawns turn from gray or light pink to a deeper, reddish pink, 30 to 60 seconds. Flip the prawns on the rack or in the grill basket and repeat the cooking on the other side. Transfer to the low-heat area of the grill and let rest for 2 minutes.
Serve the prawns whole and shell-on, drizzled with the garlic-lemon oil and garnished with the green onions, sumac, and smoked sea salt to taste.
TOASTED GARLIC LEMON OIL
MAKES ABOUT 1¼ CUPS
1 cup extra-virgin olive oil
¼ cup thinly sliced garlic
6 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon kosher salt
¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Combine the oil and garlic in a small nonreactive pot over medium heat; cook, stirring, until the garlic turns light brown and toasty, 4 to 6 minutes. Remove it from the heat and immediately add the lemon juice; season with salt and pepper. Serve warm. Store in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.
Toasting the garlic until lightly browned sweetens it and adds a nutty quality to the oil.