Spiced Shrimp Boil with Horseradish Cocktail Sauce

Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Serves:



Appears in

My Street Food Kitchen

My Street Food Kitchen

By Jennifer Joyce

Published 2015

  • About

Every couple of years we stay in the Outer Banks of North Carolina, USA, with my sister’s family. The only thing that trumps the wild southern beaches is the gargantuan fresh prawns. Shrimp boils are the local specialty: shrimp poached in beer and aromatic spices. Spread out lots of newspapers, then peel, dip and eat.


  • 80 g ( oz) Old Bay Seasoning, plus extra for sprinkling
  • 750 ml (26 fl oz/3 cups) beer
  • 10 black peppercorns
  • 4 bay leaves
  • 1 onion, quartered
  • 1 kg (2 lb 4 oz) raw large prawns (shrimp), unpeeled

Cocktail sauce

  • 250 ml (9 fl oz/1 cup) tomato sauce (ketchup)
  • tablespoons grated horseradish
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 teaspoon hot chilli sauce
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon celery salt


To make the cocktail sauce, combine all of the ingredients in a small bowl and refrigerate, covered, until serving.

Put 2 litres (70 fl oz/8 cups) water in a large saucepan over high heat and add the Old Bay Seasoning, beer, peppercorns, bay leaves and onion. Bring to the boil. Add the prawns and cook for 3 minutes or just until they turn pink. Drain and sprinkle with the extra Old Bay Seasoning.

Serve the prawns while still warm on a big platter with newspapers spread out on the table to catch the shells. Dip the peeled prawns into the cocktail sauce.