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Shrimp Storage and Selection

Save shrimp shells to make a flavorful broth base for soups


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Head-on Shrimp

© 2008 Peggy Trowbridge Filippone

Shrimp Cooking Tips and Hints

It is important not to overcook shrimp or it will become dry and rubbery. Cook only until the flesh is opaque. When using a boiling method, the shrimp will turn pink, rise to the top and float when done. Some recipes will cook the shrimp within the recipe itself. Others will require you cook the shrimp ahead, usually via a simple boiling method and perhaps with a spice mixture or crab boil mix.

• You can make a wonderful broth by boiling the shells from shrimp with spices, onion, garlic, and perhaps some celery and carrot. Cool and sift through cheesecloth when the desired strength is achieved, and freeze it for later use in soups or chowders.

• Try using beer for your cooking liquid to give shrimp a wonderful, slightly sweet flavor.

• If your shrimp begins to smell a bit off, but are still young from the market, they are probably still okay to eat. You can remove the smell by rubbing the shrimp with baking soda, let them stand in the refrigerator for about 10 minutes, and then rinse thoroughly to remove all traces of the soda. Do not use this method if the shrimp has a strong ammonia odor, which is an indication that it is time to toss them.

• It is easier to peel and devein raw shrimp rather than cooked shrimp.

• Shrimp cooked in the shell has more flavor than shrimp peeled before cooking.

• Expect the weight of raw shrimp to reduce by half when cooked. Two pounds raw shrimp will yield 1 pound cooked, peeled shrimp.

• You may substitute other shellfish such as crab, prawns, crayfish, and lobster in most shrimp recipes with equally satisfying results, so feel free to experiment.

More about Shrimp and Shrimp Recipes:

Shrimp Selection and Storage
Should shrimp be deveined? FAQ
What is rock shrimp? FAQ
Shrimp Cooking Tips and Hints
Shrimp History
Shrimp Recipes
Shrimp Photo © 2008 Peggy Trowbridge Filippone, licensed to About.com, Inc.


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