It’s been the first sunny, warm week of the year here in Seattle. That always leads to getting creative in the kitchen with recipes and meal ideas that don’t require turning on the oven or, at least, minimizing heat sources.
This Gazpacho-Style Shrimp Cocktail requires no heat and features some familiar Mexican flavors that bring some spice, while keeping things cool. This shrimp cocktail was inspired by a version I used to regularly order at a fast-casual coastal Mexican chain here in Seattle.
While you could boil your own shrimp, this is a great way to use the pre-cooked stuff you can pick up thawed at the seafood counter or frozen and sold in a shrimp cocktail ring in your grocer’s freezer section.
- 1 pound medium shrimp, cooked, peeled and deveined
- 1 cup red onion, diced
- ½ cup celery, fine diced
- 1 cup English cucumber, peeled and diced
- 1 jalapeno, minced
- ¼ cup fresh cilantro, chopped
- 1 avocado, cut into ½-inch chunks
- 1 lime, zested and juiced
- 1 15-ounce can whole or crushed tomatoes
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- ½ teaspoon cracked black pepper
- Hot sauce to taste (I used Tabasco.)
Cut cooked, peeled and deveined shrimp into ½-inch pieces and add to a large bowl. Reserve 4 whole shrimp with tail on for garnish.
Add red onion, celery, cucumber and jalapeño into the bowl, along with zest and juice of 1 lime. Fold in avocado chunks and chopped cilantro.
Pour 1 can of tomatoes into a blender or small food processor with tomato paste and ¼ cup of water. Pulse just a few times to combine and create a liquid base. Keep a few chunks of tomato for texture, if you prefer.
Pour the tomato mixture into the shrimp and veggie bowl. Season with salt, cracked black pepper and hot sauce (about 2 teaspoons gives me just enough spice), and stir to combine. If your gazpacho is thick, add another ¼ cup of water to thin.
Taste, adjust seasoning and serve in cocktail glasses. Garnish each with a tail-on shrimp.