I've never been a big football enthusiast, but there's one part of the game that has always appealed to me: the pregame tailgate. In the chapter devoted to tailgating in The Tex-Mex Grill and Backyard Barbacoa Cookbook, Robb Walsh describes the parking lot scene before a Houston Texans game and it sounds like a sight to behold: thirty thousand fans grilling, drinking, and eating, all with their own unique menus designed to show off their grilling creativity and expertise.
These Virgin Mary Grilled Shrimp Cócteles combine grilled shrimp with Bloody Mary mix, undoubtedly leftover from pregame cocktails. The shrimp are marinated in a sweet-spicy mix of grapefruit juice, jalapeño jelly, and soy sauce, and then grilled and placed in glasses filled with creamy avocado slices and finished with a splash of Bloody Mary mix. Add a few saltines or tortilla chips and a cold beer and you have an ideal parking lot appetizer.
- Four 8-inch wooden skewers, soaked in water for 15 minutes
- 1 pound jumbo shrimp (16 shrimp)
- 1/2 cup grapefruit juice
- 1/4 cup jalapeño jelly
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- Cooking spray
- 2 ripe avocados, sliced
- 1 cup chopped red onion
- Juice of 1 lime
- Tabasco sauce, to taste
- Bloody Mary Mix (recipe follows)
- 1/2 cup chopped cilantro leaves, for garnish
- 1 quart Spicy V-8
- 3 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
- Juice of a Mexican or Key lime
- 1 tablespoon red pepper flakes
- 1 tablespoon cracked black pepper
- 1 teaspoon minced cilantro
Thread the shrimp on the soaked wooden skewers. In a measuring cup or small bowl, combine the grapefruit juice, pepper jelly, garlic, oil, and soy sauce. In a baking dish, cover the shrimp with the marinade, cover with plastic wrap, and place in the refrigerator or 30 minutes.
Light the grill. Shake the shrimp skewers to remove excess marinade. Coat the shrimp with cooking spray and grill for 2 to 3 minutes on each side, or until the shrimp are cooked through. Remove from the grill. Remove the shrimp from the skewers.
Divide the avocado slices among 4 martini glasses (or four clear plastic glasses if you are tailgating). Sprinkle with red onion, lime juice, and hot sauce. Add 4 shrimp to each glass. Fill the glass with Bloody Mary Mix (without alcohol) until it just covers the bottom of the shrimp. Garnish with cilantro. Serve with a spoon and saltine crackers or tortilla chips.
Bloody Mary Mix
- makes 5 cups -
Combine all mix ingredients, stir well, and place in the refrigerator until well chilled. The mix will last for up to 2 days, covered and refrigerated.