When I entertain, most often I don’t serve a full 3-course meal. I find that puts too much pressure on me as the hostess and cook. When I do decide to go the 3-course route however, I like to keep things simple and re-work old favourites that are sure to impress.
Here I decided to take the starter of my childhood, good ‘ol prawn cocktail and turn it into a chic salad using the same principles but adding some oomph with a home-made ‘Marie-Rose’ dressing, thinly sliced spring onions and micro leaves.
I know ‘designer leaves’ are all the rage right now but I couldn’t imagine prawn cocktail without old fashioned iceberg lettuce which is still one of my favourites. Its light green, almost white leaves compliment the plump, pink prawns perfectly and it adds just the right amount of crisp, sweet flavour to freshen up the salad.
With the prawns I took a bit of a shortcut and used Woolworths’ cooked and peeled prawns but if you can’t get hold of them, simply peel and de-head fresh prawns and poach for a minute or two until cooked.
The flavour of cooked prawns, Marie-Rose dressing and iceberg lettuce is one that reminds me of my childhood as this was always the go-to starter to impress guests. And now, almost 20-years later, I’m delighted to say that nothing has changed. This salad will impress even the pickiest of guests.
The amounts for the salad aren’t specific.
3 extra-large, free-range egg yolks
juice of 1 lemon
1 garlic cloves, crushed
1 heaped t Dijon mustard
1 t tomato paste
1/2 t salt
250ml canola oil
for the salad
Iceberg lettuce, washed & dried
cooked prawns (approximately 5-8 prawns per person)
sliced spring onions
- In a blender, combine the egg yolks, lemon juice, garlic, mustard, tomato paste, salt and sugar and blend until well combined.
- With the blender running, slowly drizzle in the oil until completely incorporated. If necessary, add 1-2 T water to thin out the dressing.
- Set aside.
- To assemble the salad, place the lettuce on plates followed by the prawns. Scatter over the spring onions and micro-leaves/dill fronds. (You could also add cubed avocado if you wanted to.)
- Drizzle over the Marie-Rose dressing and serve immediately.
This recipe was developed for Woolworth’s Woolies Pantry for Masterchef SA.