Although prawn cocktail might seem a bit dated, it has enjoyed a resurgence in popularity in recent years. Made properly with fresh ingredients, it can make an elegant yet simple starter that no one will forget in a hurry.


Marinated Cherry Tomatoes:

  • 10 small cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1 tblsp extra virgin olive oil
  • dash of balsamic vinegar

Marie Rose Sauce:

  • 4 tblsp mayonnaise
  • 2 tblsp tomato ketchup
  • 1 tblsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 0.5 tsp prepared english mustard
  • dash of tabasco
  • dash of worcestershire sauce
  • squeeze of lemon juice


  • 2 ripe hass avocados
  • 2 tblsp mayonnaise
  • juice of 1 lime

To serve:

  • 20 small little gem lettuce leaves, trimmed
  • 4 lemon wedges
  • 20 large dublin bay prawns, cooked and peeled
  • small handful of fresh chives, cut into 5cm (2in) pieces
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper


  1. To make the marinated tomatoes, place the cherry tomatoes in a bowl and season generously. Sprinkle over the olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Cover with clingfilm and set aside at room temperature for at least 10 minutes (or up to 1 hour is fine) to allow the flavours to mingle.
  2. To make the Marie Rose sauce, whisk together the mayonnaise, ketchup, olive oil, mustard, Tabasco and Worcestershire in a bowl. Season to taste and add a squeeze of lemon juice. Cover with clingfilm and chill until needed.
  3. To make the guacamole, cut the avocados in half and remove the stones. Put the flesh in a bowl and mash to a purée. Stir in the mayonnaise and lime juice and season to taste. Cover with clingfilm and chill for up to 2 hours.

To serve:

Arrange 5 Little Gem lettuce leaves on each serving plate and put a lemon wedge in the middle of each plate. Add small spoonfuls of the guacamole, the cooked prawns, marinated cherry tomatoes and teaspoons of the Marie Rose sauce. Garnish each one with a piece of chive.