Mariners’ Seafood Cocktail

This showstopper requires the freshest seafood you can find. Choose any variety you enjoy and match your catch with a zingy, lip-smacking sauce.

Yield: 2-10 servings

Poaching Liquid

  • 1 gallon water
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons salt
  • 2 teaspoons black peppercorns
  • 2 bay leaves


  • Large shrimp, peeled and deveined (1-2 per serving)
  • Bay scallops (5 per serving)
  • Squid, cleaned and sliced in 1/2 inch pieces (6 ounces per serving)
  • Crab claws or legs (1 per serving)
  • Fully cooked lobster meat (2 ounces per serving)
  • Fully cooked crab meat (2 ounces per serving)
  • Mussels, steamed in their shells and chilled (2 per serving)

Sauce and Garnish

  • Cocktail sauce of your choice or guacamole
  • Salsa (optional)
  • Lemon wedges for garnish

In a large saucepan, combine poaching liquid ingredients and bring to a boil. Add shrimp (if using) and simmer just until done. Remove shrimp with a strainer, place in a bowl, cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour. Repeat with scallops, squid, and crab claws/legs–whichever you are using. Coarsely chop lobster meat (if using) and chill. Drain crab meat well (if using) and pick out any shell pieces; reserve chilled.

For each serving, spoon some cocktail sauce (or guacamole) into a goblet. Top with cooked seafood of your choice attractively arranged. (If using guacamole, spoon some salsa over the top.) Serve immediately garnished with lemon wedges.

Courtesy of Holland America Line ” A Taste of Excellence Cookbook” by Rudi Sodamin, 2006.