King prawns cocktail recipe

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10 min

Prawn cocktail has suffered a bad press in recent years. Its connotations conjure up tired images of suburban dinner parties from the 1970s – think Abigail’s Party – but the dish is much better than that. It is, in fact, a contemporary classic and if you have the courage to try, you will immediately find out why. Its light, and fresh, and just the thing to start a meal. It’s also very easy to put together. And it tastes delicious! So park your prejudices and let your taste buds live a little.


  • 125g cooked and peeled jumbo king prawns
  • 4tbsp mayonnaise
  • 1tbsp tomato ketchup
  • ¼tsp creamed horseradish (or a drop or two of Tabasco) to taste
  • 1 lime
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 little gem lettuce, trimmed, washed and drained
  • Mustard and cress to garnish


  • Drain the prawns. Mix together the mayonnaise, ketchup and horseradish (or Tabasco). Cut a couple of slices from the lime for a garnish, add a little lime juice, to taste, to the mayonnaise mixture, and season to taste with salt and pepper.

  • Finely shred the lettuce and pop in the bottom of a couple of cocktail glasses. Spoon over the mayonnaise mix and neatly arrange the prawns on top.

  • Garnish with mustard and cress and a slice of lime.

Top tip for making King prawns cocktail

When adding the horseradish (or Tabasco) only add a little at a time; and check. You want to add a little flavour, not a lot of heat.

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