Prawns are a festive classic. We prefer king or tiger prawns for their sweet, firm flesh. Serve the salad assembled, or for a more casual gathering, put out all the elements on the table for guests to assemble their own salad.
- 24 king prawns or tiger prawns, peeled, tails intact
- 3 avocados, cut into thin wedges and drizzled with a little lemon juice to prevent discolouring
- 3 baby cos, outer leaves torn, hearts quartered
- 3 inner celery stalks with leaves, thinly sliced, leaves reserved
- Extra-virgin olive oil, for drizzling
- Baby watercress or watercress sprigs, to serve
Spiced tomato dressing
- 200 ml olive oil
- 250 gm cherry or grape tomatoes
- 1 garlic clove, finely grated
- 2 tbsp red wine vinegar
- ¾ tsp cayenne, or to taste
- Dash of Cognac or brandy
- 1For spiced tomato dressing, heat 2 tbsp olive oil in a large frying pan over high heat, add tomatoes and fry, tossing occasionally, until scorched and softened (4-5 minutes). Add garlic, rind and vinegar, remove from heat and transfer to a blender. Add remaining ingredients, blend until smooth, season to taste and refrigerate in an airtight container until required. Dressing will keep for up to 5 days, taste before using and brighten with a squeeze of lemon juice if necessary.
- 2Arrange prawns, avocado, cos and celery on a serving platter, season to taste and drizzle lightly with extra-virgin olive oil, then dressing to taste, scatter with celery leaves and watercress and serve.
Drink Suggestion: Pale, dry rosé
Drink suggestion by Max Allen.