Recipe Detail

Isabel Spence's Pickled Shrimp Cocktail

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  • Brief Description

    Your great grandmother Isabel was an expert hostess and this was one of her go-to's that everyone looked forward to when they attended one of her famous Iowa City cocktail parties! Delicious chilled pickled shrimp which is best when made ahead, the night before.

  • Main Ingredient

    Large fresh or frozen shrimp

  • Category:  Appetizers

  • Cuisine:  Seafood

  • Prep Time:  -10 min(s)

  • Cook Time:  24 min(s)

  • Recipe Type:  Public

  • Source:

  • Tags:

  • Posted By:  CookingwiththeCalancas

  • Posted On:  Mar 24, 2023

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Number of Servings:


1.Thaw 3 lbs of large, deveined shrimp, peel & rinse. Place in pot & pour in enough water to cover shrimp. Place in half cup of celery tops, 3 tsp salt, 1/4 cup pickling spice & cook for 3-5 min until shrimp turn pink but are still tender crisp.
2. Rinse off shrimp w/ cold water to stop from overcooking
3. Layer shrimp & thinly sliced sweet onions in shallow dish
4. Add a few bay leaves in between layers
5. Make marinade sauce: 1 1/4 cup salad oil, 3/4 cup white or cider vinegar, 1 1/2 tsp salt, 2 1/2 tsp celery seed, 1/2 tsp sugar, 2 1/2 tbs capers & juice, dash of Tabasco
6. Pour marinade over shrimp, onions and bay leaves & let sit in refrigerator 24 hours. Stir occasionally.
7. Remove bay leaves and serve in shallow bowl


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