BBQ Shrimp Cocktail

The combination of horseradish, lemon and various peppers adds a bright spicy flavor to the shrimp, and the bay leaf adds a warm, rounded back note.

Recipe courtesy Vincent Camillo for Cooking Channel
TOTAL TIME: 40 min
Prep: 10 min
Inactive Prep: --
Cook: 30 min
YIELD: 4 servings


  • 8 plum tomatoes, quartered (about 1 1/2 pounds)
  • 1/2 small Vidalia onion, cut in half through the root
  • 1 teaspoon vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoon dark brown sugar
  • Kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon ancho chile powder
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried mustard powder
  • Pinch cayenne
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 tablespoons cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon horseradish, prepared or freshly grated
  • 1 pound large shrimp, peeled and deveined, tail on
    • Special equipment: 4 long metal skewers
      recipe tools


      Prepare an outdoor grill or grill pan over high heat. Grill the tomato and onion pieces, turning to get grill marks on all sides, until the vegetables are softened, 5 to 8 minutes. Keep the grill on to cook the shrimp.

      Heat the oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the brown sugar, 2 teaspoons salt, ancho chile powder, black pepper, allspice, cinnamon, mustard, cayenne and bay leaf. Stir just until the smell of the spices hits your nose, about 30 seconds. Add the vinegar and the grilled tomatoes and onions, stirring to incorporate, and cook until the tomatoes come apart and become thick and jam-like, about 8 minutes.

      Remove the bay leaf and put the contents of the sauce into a blender. Puree until smooth. Add the lemon juice, horseradish and salt to taste.

      Thread the shrimp onto the skewers. Divide the sauce, reserving about a cup for serving. Place the skewers on the grill and brush with the remaining sauce. Turn the shrimp occasionally and continue to brush with sauce until the shrimp are cooked through and the sauce is slightly charred, about 8 minutes. Serve with reserved sauce on the side.

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