Potted Shrimp

Small but mighty, brown shrimp are jammed-full of flavour and are a classic dish in Leigh-on-Sea! For extra zing, this recipe uses some cayenne pepper and paprika – serve warm with your favourite sourdough bread.


  • 3 shallots, finely diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tsp ground nutmeg (mace or allspice are good alternatives)
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1 tbsp oil
  • 250g clarified butter (or 450g unsalted butter)
  • 250g brown shrimp, cooked and peeled
  • Sea salt
  • Sourdough bread, to serve


  1. To clarify your butter, melt it in a saucepan and melt over a medium-high heat. Remove from the heat and allow the liquid to settle. Skim off any white foam and discard. Pour into a wide bowl and refrigerate for 30 minutes. Once it has set, remove the solid butter and discard any milky water left at the bottom of the bowl.
  2. Heat your oil in a saucepan over a medium heat. Once it’s hot, add the shallots and garlic and cook for one minute, stirring to stop them from sticking. After a minute, add the spices and cook for another 3 minutes.
  3. Once all of the shallots are coated in spice and smelling fragrant, add the clarified butter to the pan and season everything well with salt.
  4. Allow the butter to melt, then remove from the heat and stir in the shrimp. The heat of the butter, shallots and spices should be enough to warm the seafood through.
  5. Divide the mixture into four small bowls, empty jars or ramekins and serve with a thick slice of fresh sourdough!