Cocktail Sauce

It’s disappointing that many restaurants no longer accompany shellfish like shrimp and crab with this traditional American dipping sauce.  Nowadays it comes with something with no zing, apparently generated by an app designed to impress foodies rather than people.

In V1 it was ketchup and horseradish, and it was great. V2 came along when someone spiffed it up with some lemon juice – and later lemon zest – and all was well with the world.  Then later some genius who has not yet been adequately recognized created V3 by either substituting chili sauce for the ketchup or going 50/50.

Later someone slapped in some Worcestershire sauce. Near Perfection was achieved. V4.

Somewhere along the line I added garlic and ground coriander.  I think it’s another improvement, but then again I’m one step away from putting garlic on my morning Raisin Bran.

Yeah, I get it. Shellfish flesh has a delicate flavor. And there is nothing subtle about this sauce. Some, therefore, conclude it overpowers the shellfish.

I call shenanigans. Dip some in the sauce, dip another forkful in the drawn butter. Repeat. Everything comes together in a rising “Kumbaya!” crescendo. Stop over-thinking things. This is good. Crab is good. You’re harshing my mellow.

And for those of you who know me, yes, the above paragraph is largely directed at my wife.

Print Recipe
Cocktail Sauce Yum
Great for dipping your shrimp or Dungeness crab! Extra good after a few hours or overnight in the fridge.

Intended to be horseradish forward, but the heat of prepared horseradish can vary WIDELY from jar to jar - even the same brand. Sometimes a tablespoon is enough to blow your head off, sometimes you need half a jar to get it right. So add it to taste. You want a good zing but maybe stay short of eye-watering.
Course Prep
Cuisine American
Servings
Cup
Ingredients
Course Prep
Cuisine American
Servings
Cup
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Mix it all together. If same-day try to prepare it early enough to give it a couple hours rest before serving. Overnight is better.
Recipe Notes

If you don't have a zester (a.k.a. micro-planer) they are like seven bucks on Amazon. Get one. When you throw away un-zested citrus the terrorists win. [Apologies to Meathead Goldwyn]

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