Let's Chat about Shrimp
When you think of shrimp you’re likely curious about that vein and de-veining, To me “the vein” more resembles a black tube and isn’t a vein, at all. It’s part of its intestinal tract…which runs down it’s back. Which brings me back to Shrimp, Shrimp, Shrimp, Who Knew!
Removing or deveining the shrimp of its intestine, to me is a must as is removing its head. Yep, off with its head. Getting back to deveining; In my mind, there are unlimited possibilities of what that little critter has eaten, not excluding a sand particle here or there. No grit for me!
How do you clean and Devein a Shrimp?
I’ve been told if the vein is left intact and the shrimp is cooked the cooking process kills any bacteria. Bacteria!!! What?? Ah Yeah, not for me.
Here are the basics:
- Place shrimp in a colander and rinse thoroughly.
- Inspect and dispose of any that are slimy, discolored, or have an overly strong fish odor.
- If they have their heads intact, remove and discard them. They should pull away from the body. Tip: place discarded parts into a zip lock baggie and seal before throwing it into the trash.
- Moving down the shrimp to its legs. Yeah, those have to be removed as well. I will start at the legs closed to the head and pull down towards its tail.
- The shell is next. I use a small sharp knife and starting from the top slice down its back to its tail. Remove and dispose of the shell.
- Now the vein has to go. I’ve done this two different ways. One is to slice down into the shrimp using your knife and then pull out the vein with your fingers. Another method is to use a small ice pick and starting near the top of the shrimp, insert the pick moving down towards the tail. This will usually result in the veins removal. It’s really a personal preference and what you are most successful at.
- Re-rinse the shrimp
- Cook immediately, (in an airtight container), or place in a very cold refrigerator in an airtight container, (No more than 24 hours).
There you go, not too bad and many times you’ll find frozen shrimp already deveined prior to packaging.
A few other facts About Shrimp, Shrimp, Shrimp, Who Knew
- There are over 250 species of shrimp worldwide…Who Knew!
- Coloring varies from almost white to brown. Give me the lighter shades…
- Shrimp cannot be refrozen
- Shrimp will always cook up tender if you pre-cool them. Pop them into the freezer for 10 minutes or into an ice bath.
- Small shrimp cook up in 1-2 minutes and larger shrimp 4-6 minutes.
- Cooked shrimp will have some pink coloration and a soft “C” curve…not an “O”.
Now you have some great information to make you successful when preparing and enjoy a shrimp meal. See our delicious shrimp recipe here.
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