I'll begin by saying I prepared the shrimp cocktail (shown here) last night after we arrived back from our trip. I was dying for the real thing, which leads me to my quandary...
The other evening (while on vacation) I ordered a Shrimp Cocktail appetizer from a well established seafood restaurant known for its quality and freshness. I was craving the dishes classic presentation and beautiful simplicity. When our waitress delivered the plate, there in front of me sat 10 medium shrimp (atop crushed ice), shells on, undeveined, no lemon, and a tiny (and I mean tiny) bit of cocktail sauce served along the side.
Now DO NOT get me wrong, I'm a girl who loves to get her hands dirty (especially when it comes to shellfish) but a $12 first course...I was in the mood for elegance...in the mood for a no-fuss app before indulging in my salmon filet and sipping chardonnay. I scoured the menu in search of Pick-n-Peel Shrimp..."they must have gotten it wrong, right?" No...this was in fact, their version of shrimp cocktail.
I shrugged my shoulders, graciously began peeling and (having peeled many a shrimp in my day) quickly finished the plate. (The whole time engaged in imaginary conversation with Tom, Padma, Eric and Gail with us all in agreement... this is simply not shrimp cocktail!)
So my question...how do you define Shrimp Cocktail? Was the restaurant being lazy or am I being a Prima donna
TAKE IT OFF FOOD #6!
Fill pot with 2 inches water. Bring to a boil. Place shrimp in pot, cover for 2 minutes. Quickly remove shrimp with slotted spoon and place into ice bath. Peel and devein shrimp (leaving the tip of the tail intact). Serve on crushed ice with plenty of homemade cocktail sauce (ketchup and prepared horseradish) and lemon wedges on the side.