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Prawn Cocktail in Iceberg Cups

These simple little bites are forever popular. Quick to put together and quite happy sitting in the fridge for a few hours, they are the canapé I turn to when I want something that will be almost universally liked. I usually have a few prawns in the freezer and there is always mayonnaise and ketchup kicking around. Stir in a few drops of Tabasco, squeeze of lemon, sprinkle of cayenne and of course an iceberg lettuce. I would probably have to dash out to buy that, although little gem lettuce would make a good, but not so neat, substitute.


80 gms Prawns

1 Iceberg lettuce (or 1-2 little gem lettuces, just use the smaller leaves, don’t cut the leaves)

3 tbsp mayonnaise

2 tsp tomato ketchup


Lemon juice



If using the iceberg, cut it in half from top to bottom. Take one half and cut out the core. Keep the other half for a salad.

Carefully ease out the leaves and separate them into layers of 2 or 3 leaves each. Using a cutter of around 5cms in diameter (click here for the on I use from Amazon), cut out circles. Try and cut into the curves of the leaves, so that they are as scooped as possible to hold the prawn cocktail neatly.

Make the cocktail sauce by mixing the mayonnaise and ketchup and adding a few drops of Tabasco and a sprinkle of lemon juice to taste.

Add the prawns, slicing them if they are too big, so that a few will fit into each lettuce cup.

Spoon the prawn cocktail onto the iceberg cups, cover loosely with damp paper towel, and store in the fridge until about 10 or so minutes before they are needed. They are best cold, but not freezing cold. Dust with a little cayenne and serve.

For a serving idea, the pale green of the lettuce and pink of the prawn cocktail look pretty on a black plate or a slate.

For a starter idea, especially if not for too many people, use a well trimmed iceberg lettuce half for each serving. You may need to straighten the bottom of each half to make it stable.

Fill with the prawn cocktail, maybe pad it out with some cubes of cucumber, sprinkle with the cayenne or some chopped chives and serve.

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