Thanks to some modern twists, this retro classic is staging a classy return. The prawn cocktail is back, being reinvented by modern chefs and served up any which way in rolls and burgers, layered in glass jars, or given a spicy Asian spin. Prep everything beforehand and assemble at the last minute to avoid the sog factor.

A time-honoured classic trotted out each and every Christmas by families across the land, the prawn cocktail is traditionally little more than fresh cooked prawns, shredded iceberg lettuce and lots of creamy cocktail sauce, served in a stemmed glass.

1 avocado
1 tbsp lime or lemon juice
sea salt and black pepper
2 tbsp tomato sauce
150ml good mayonnaise
Tabasco or chilli sauce to taste
half tsp smoked paprika
12 round crisp corn chips
12 prawns, cooked and peeled
1 cup picked baby rocket leaves
2 tbsp finely snipped chives

1. Roughly crush the avocado with a fork, then mix in 1 tbsp lime or lemon juice, sea salt and black pepper.

2. To make the sauce, mix tomato sauce, mayonnaise, Tabasco and paprika with sea salt and pepper.

3. To assemble, set out 12 round corn chips, spread with crushed avocado and arrange a few small rocket leaves and a prawn on each one. Add a spoonful of cocktail sauce, scatter with extra paprika, chives, sea salt and pepper and serve.

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