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In Colombia Prawn Cocktail or “Coctel de Camarones” is one of the most popular snacks on the beach and in the kitchens of the Caribbean and Pacific towns of Colombia.   Prawns are a staple in my home as my mother was born on the Pacific coast, which has the best seafood in Colombia.

This cocktail is a delicious combination of mayonnaise, ketchup, lime juice with a bit of Aji or heat, and sometimes with thinly sliced red onions topped with coriander leaves and served with Saltine crackers.

I like to add a few more ingredients when serving this cocktail, avocados cut into small cubes, and finely shredded lettuce.  I think these two ingredients add freshness and crispiness to the cocktail.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups shredded iceberg lettuce
  • 2 cups of cooked prawns, shelled and deveined
  • 2 cups of avocado, cut into small cube
  • Chopped coriander or parsley
  • Saltine crackers to serve

Ingredients for the Sauce

  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 4 tablespoons tomato sauce or ketchup
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tablespoon of lemon juice or lime juice
  • tabasco sauce to taste
  • lemon or lime slices to decorate the glasses
  • a few cooked prawns to decorate around the rim of the glass

Method for the sauce

  • Start by cooking the prawns briefly in their shells in a pot of boiling salted water.
  • Transfer them to a bowl of cold water with ice.  Once they are cold you can peel and clean them.

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  • Combine the rest of the ingredients and add tabasco and salt and pepper to taste.
  • Fold in the cooked prawns and combine all the ingredients well.

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  • To serve, fill the glasses with a layer of lettuce, then add a layer of cut avocado in small cubes, season with salt and bit of lime or lemon juice.

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  •  Add the prawn mixture.
  • Decorate the glass with a slice of lemon and a cooked prawn.
  • Serve the cocktail with brown bread, Saltinas or Salada crackers.

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Tips

  • Rule number one DO NOT overcooked the prawns.
  • DO NOT peel the shells of the prawns before cooking them.  The shells help the prawns keep their shape.
  • In Latin American this cocktail is always served with Saltine crackers, but you can use any brand available or brown bread.

 

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