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Fri, 11 May 2007

Light prawn cocktail with basil

Having recovered from my gratin and rabbit phases, I now seem to be cooking shrimps or prawns almost every day. The explanation is simple: our local fishmonger has started selling real uncooked fresh prawns (sometimes they are huge, almost what we would call gambas, but I have certainly no intention of getting into a polemic about what these beasts are actually called, you all know what I'm talking about).

The problem with the standard "prawn cocktail" which is probably served on every hotel menu in the UK, is the horrible thousand island dressing (the French call it "sauce américaine" which is very apt, methinks). Usually this stuff comes out of a bottle purchased at the cash and carry, sometimes it is mayonnaise (also out of a jar) mixed with some tomato ketchup. My home-made version is light and fluffy

- boil some shrimps for 2-3 minutes (depends on size), drain and plunge into cold water
- peel shrimps
- separate an egg, beat up the white of the egg until stiff
- put the yolk of the egg, fresh lime juice, olive oil (quite a lot) into a little electric mixer and make a mayonnaise (this can be done by hand adding the oil slowly but it's so much easier using electricity
- add some tomato purée, salt and paprika (mild chilly powder is okay), some chopped basil leaves and a crushed garlic clove, mix a little more
- gently fold pink mayonnaise into the fluffy egg whites
- add the cooked prawns and serve on a bed of shredded lettuce, decorate with basil leaves and a little paprika

posted on: 11/05/2007 at 12:08 in category: [/cooking] with permanent link

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