Prawn cocktail cups

Prawn cocktail cups

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(2 ratings)

Prep: 20 mins


Serves 8
These retro starters can be made an hour in advance and handed round with drinks before dinner

Nutrition and extra info

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal176
  • fat14g
  • saturates2g
  • carbs2g
  • sugars2g
  • fibre1g
  • protein11g
  • salt1.06g
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  • 4-6 Little Gem lettuce hearts
  • 350-400g/12-14oz cooked, peeled prawns



    There are thousands of different species of prawn, but tiger, king and North Atlantic are the…

  • 3 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 4 tbsp coarsely chopped flat-leaf parsley
  • mustard and cress, to serve



    A condiment made by mixing the ground seeds of the mustard plant with a combination of…

For the marie rose sauce

  • 100g mayonnaise
  • 25g tomato ketchup
  • Tabasco sauce


  1. To make the Marie Rose sauce, blend the mayonnaise with the ketchup and a couple of shakes of Tabasco in a bowl. Trim the bases of the lettuce hearts, discard the outer leaves and separate the leaves – they need to be about 10cm long and you want about 24 in total. Reserve the tiny hearts for another salad.

  2. Wash the prawns and pat dry between double layers of kitchen paper. Toss in a bowl with the olive oil, lemon juice, parsley and a little seasoning.

  3. Lay the leaves out on serving plates, cup-side up. Drop several prawns into each. Dollop ½ tsp sauce on top, then scatter over some mustard and cress. These can be prepared 1 hr in advance, in which case cover with cling film and set aside in a cool place.

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Comments, questions and tips

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26th Oct, 2012
Made these as a starter for a dinner party. Served as individual portions on a plate so no problems with picking up and made a change from serving in a glass. Had everything ready before hand and put them together at the last minute, so lettuce still crisp. Very well received. All my guests were "more mature" so reminded us of our youth when prawn cocktail was the norm as a starter.
7th Dec, 2010
Made these for a 70s Christmas drinks party, they went down an absolute storm! Very easy to make, I pre-prepared the marie rose sauce and marinaded the prawns in two separate dishes kept in fridge and assembled just before serving to avoid the leaves going limp. I also used chicory leaves as unable to find gem lettuce in Malta. The chicory was very crisp and worked well, although the individual canapes were longer and more 'boat' like - they were still a manageable mouthful so a good substitute.
6th Apr, 2009
The gem leaves need to be crisp otherwise they all fall apart when picking up to eat. In which case you can't leave them for 1 hour. You can, however, put the leaves in iced water for 10 minutes or so to crisp them up, then assemble.
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