Why is it that when I think of this delicious appetizer recipe, my mind racing back to scenes from Mad Men and traditional Southern-style weddings? What is wrong with us as a people that we've strayed from the easy, appealing, cool-to-the-tongue appetizer recipe that's so simple it's hardly even a recipe?
I present to you the perfect appetizer from yesteryear: Shrimp Cocktail.
It hasn't totally disappeared. You can find it at big box stores, ready to serve from a giant plastic platter. And you can still find steamed shrimp in most seafood sections of the grocery store, we'll admit. But when was the last time you attended a party to find a honkin' huge bowl of spicy cocktail sauce and a bowl of peeled shrimp on ice?
When I was growing up, my Dad used to hunt these bad boys down. He was king of the seafood, once calling me to tell me he'd found a deal on lobster at a chain fast food restaurant. "A pound of lobster for $3.99!" he said. "Is it 'lobster' with a 'j'?" I replied.
But that was Dad. Constantly hunting fresh, or at least cheap, seafood. Sunday brunch at the country club never disappointed, and neither did heavy appetizer-style wedding receptions. Shrimp cocktail was certainly invited then! But never did it appear on our holiday buffet, at local parties, or even as an easy summer appetizer at home.
So now I read that shrimp cocktail is considered "retro". Well, friends, of all the things we can bring back, I'd say an appetizer as simple as this (Two ingredients! Already prepared, unless you want to steam your own shrimp!) is just about a no-brainer.
Tails up, friends! This Thursday, grab a pound of steamed shrimp, a bottle of ruby-hued heaven in a jar, and a few friends to enjoy this tasty snack alongside you.