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Shrimp Cocktail, Mexican Style

You may not know this about me, but I'm a complete and total freak for shrimp. I just love them to the point of guilt. My pal Christopher Ann shared her recipe for a typical, yet wonderful, shrimp cocktail and it inspires me to go straight to the kitchen. Shrimpcocktail From Christopher Ann: Coctel de Camarones Mexican-style Shrimp Cocktail 1 lb boiled, cleaned medium shrimp (see below) 1 1/2 C tomato juice juice of 1/2 large lemon 1/2 C catsup 1/2 C chopped green onions 1 ripe tomato, seeded & chopped (you can peel them and when I have homegrown tomatoes with their skin a little tougher, I do, but most of the time, I don't bother. In winter, when you can't get flavorful tomatoes, I use those 'Nature Sweet' cherry tomatoes, and I don't peel them) cilantro, chopped, to taste 1 jalapeno, minced (optional -- I only add this if I'm sure that my guests like it) Dash or two Worchestershire Tabasco, or Tapatio, or other hot sauce -- preferably Mexican if you can get it (edited to add: Hey Chris, what about Rio Fuego?) avocados Combine all ingredients except avocados. Chill for several hours. Traditionally served in large goblets, like beer schooners, called 'copas' in Mexico, or in large parfait or Pilsner glasses. Pour the cocktails into copas. Slice your avocadoes in half. Hold the half with the seed in one palm, and with a sharp knife, whack into the seed. Twist and pull and the seed should come out easily. Now whack the knife holding the seed onto the side of the sink, and the seed should fall into the sink. Now cut your avocado halves lengthwise again. Starting at the narrow end, you should be able to easily pull off the skin. On top of each 'copa' of shrimp cocktail, arrange two crescents of avocado. You can also decorate with a sprig of celery. Serve with saltines, extra slices of lime, and a selection of hot sauces. Boiled shrimp: I usually just make this with cooked shrimp I buy from the store, but it is obviously better when you boil the shrimp yourself. 24 shrimp, shells on 1 C water 1 clove garlic, chopped dash pepper 1/3 C lime juice 1 jalapeno, chopped Put everything in pot and boil until liquid reduced to approx 3/4 C. Add shrimp and cover and simmer 2-3 minutes, until shrimp are just beginning to curl. Remove shrimp immediately to cold water. When cooled, clean shrimp and chill. Note: If you serve this with mixed seafood, such as fish, squid, etc., it becomes a 'Coctel Campechana,' or 'Mixed seafood cocktail in the style that women from Campeche make it.'

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