Post # 1
I love shrimp, and all shellfish actually. But shellfish is something I’ve never wanted to cook at home for fear of screwing it up. My impression is that is so easy to overcook so I just never started cooking it.
My dinner routine is getting so stale! I decided I need to start adding shrimp to the mix, and then maybe other shellfish once I’ve figured out how to do the shrimp well.
Tell me your easy/fool proof shrimp dishes. Particularly ones that aren’t too fattening (tho a little fat is ok) & don’t require too many different kinds of fresh produce/chopping – I have very little counter space and a ridiculously small refrigerator, and I’m only cooking for 2.
Any special tips on cooking shrimp properly welcome – and what is this de-veining business about?
Post # 2
FI loves “hibachi” style shrimp. I cook it in a wok, once it gets “pink” I add a bit of butter, low sodium soy sauce and garlic powder. Takes less than 10 mins.
I cannot stand soy sauce so I make mine in the wok with already chopped veggies (costco and whole foods sell them) and sautee them for 10-15 mins (shrimp is added in the last 5-6 mins). Sometimes I make plenty of shrimp without any salt and conserve it in a ziploc bag in the fridge for 1-2 days. I add shrimp to my salads to mix it up a bit.
I admit that I am super lazy when it comes to food prep so I buy deveined/no tail shrimp.
Post # 3
lim3: Or, just get the pre-cooked frozen shrimp. It’s already pink so it saves a lot of time – just marinate, saute, toss in sauce, etc., and not worry that it’s not cooked well enough.
Post # 4
I second using the pre-cooked, frozen shrimp when first trying to cook shrimp. It makes things a lot easier. It cooks pretty quickly, and I don’t have to worry about serving undercooked shellfish.
Post # 5
Deveining is easy. Just run a paring knife along the back of the shrimp to make a shallow cut, then rinse the shrimp under cool running water to get the vein out. The vein is part of the shrimo’s digestive system and doesn’t look pretty when left in, and could have a bitter taste.
Leave the shell on but split while cooking to decrease tge chance of over cooking, and cook just till the shrimp turn pink and begin to curl. Usually that’s just 3 minutes or so.
frozen shrimp have a drier, firmer texture and less flavor so it’s worth cooking from raw.
Post # 6
I usually prefer just buying fresh (sometimes frozen if the store I’m at doesn’t have a fish counter) already deveined and tail-off shrimp. Pre-cooked is OK and definitely easy to start with if your nervous about undercooking, but I find that it can be a bit tough once you re-cook it. I prefer raw. Just throw it in a pan with a little butter or olive oil and cook until it’s pink (you’ll probably think your undercooking because it cooks really fast, but pink means done), I also like throw on some red pepper flakes and you can add veggies if you want or toss with pasta.
Post # 7
lim3: I’m super hard on my own cooking, so cooking shrimp perfectly is important to me. That is why I never buy the cooked frozen shrimp because they pretty much always come out overcooked. Instead, I buy a big frozen bag of raw, deveined and peeled shrimp. They take 10 minutes to defrost under running cold water, and they are totally prepped for you. As for actual cooking, I like to saute them. I turn the heat up pretty high on the stove with some olive oil or butter, then toss them in the pan and let them sit there for 45-60 seconds, more if they’re larger. Then when there’s a golden brown “crust” on that side I flip and repeat. Try not to move them around so they get that nice color. When you touch them, they should feel firm but not hard, and you should take them off as soon as the center areas are no longer opaque looking.
My favorite easy shrimp pasta dish is this one:
And we love this dish as well, it’s simple though you’ll need a couple more fresh ingredients, and we love to get a good fresh crusty bread to dip into it…
Post # 8
OmbreBee: This is what I was looking for, thank you! I’m not a big fan of soy sauce as the stand out profile, but I like it as supporting character. The “just pink” instruction is what I need to know.
Are all packaged shrimp or shrimp from the fresh fish case always designated veined or deveined?
Post # 9
sweetpea3363: sweetpea3363: I think sometimes precooked shrimp work great for some dishes/salads, agreed. I want to start cooking shrimp (from raw) a nicely cooked, flavorful, juicy tender/firm shrimp.
Post # 10
I agree with just buying them pre-done, or go to your grocery store and look for a close-dated marked down package of shrimp just to try cooking them. Do them one at a time and if you mess up, you’re not wasting much money. Cooking until “just pink” is a good guideline. They’ll firm up just slightly and turn opaque when they’re finished.
Most shrimp that are peeled are also deveined. If you see a slit down the back, even with the shell on, they’ve probably been deveined. Worst case, if you buy some that aren’t deveined, all it takes is a paring knife down the back and using your nail to get most of it out. A quick rinse after that and you’re set.
Post # 11
Horseradish: Deveining might be “easy” as in not technically hard, but it seems like doing it to 2 dozen shrimp would become tedious/take time away from the other limited prep I want to do. But it sounds like cooking with the shell on might get a better result for a novice. Something to consider. Thank you for the instruction.
Post # 12
I just buy deveined pre-cooked shrimp and steam it. It’s kind of hard to overcook steamed shrimp.
Post # 13
SithLady : (you’ll probably think your undercooking because it cooks really fast, but pink means done) I am actually more afraid of over cooking than under. So this is a good guideline. iI seems like it would be important to get them out of a hot pan right away once they turn pink?
And “they cook really fast” Can you elaborate? 30 seconds? 120 seconds? 5 minutes? Medium heat? Medium low/high? Better to cook low & slow or higher & quicker?
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Post # 14
lim3: Depends on what you want to do with them. If you want to get a more golden brown sear on them then go for high heat as PP said. They will cook quite fast, but it really depends on how big they are. If you want softer shrimp all the way through, then go for medium heat and cook a bit longer. The key is to make sure all the grey color is gone, at that point they are done and you should remove them from the heat.
Post # 15
Small bay scallops are pretty easy to cook too. You can saute them, or add them to pasta.