Shrimp is without a doubt one of the most popular forms of seafood in the US and abroad. When compared to other types of shellfish, like lobster for instance, it is more affordable, and can be just as delicious if prepared correctly. It is an extremely versatile shellfish and with a bit of experience, is very easy to cook.
As the title of this article suggests, many people are searching for the best way to cook frozen shrimp. The reason why this is such a popular question is because this shellfish freezes very well. Many of us, after we buy some, store it in the freezer for future use. In fact, most of the shrimp we purchase is frozen before we buy it from the store. Even the shrimp that is supposedly fresh, has more than likely been recently thawed. There is nothing wrong with this, as I said earlier, this shellfish freezes quite well.
Hopefully the shrimp you already have on hand is still in the shell. You should avoid, if possible, purchasing any that has been peeled. A lot of the flavor is in the shells, so if it has been pre-peeled, it would have lost a good deal of essential flavor. Besides, if you peel it yourself, you can save the shells and use them to make a delicious stock that can be used in lots of other recipes.
Of all the various ways to cook shrimp, grilling and broiling are by far my favorite methods as I believe they impart the best flavor and are rather simple to prepare. Below is a recipe and instructions for marinating and grilling shrimp.
ABOUT THAWING FROZEN SHRIMP
I highly recommend that you DO NOT use your microwave to defrost shrimp, or any meat for that matter. I know, from past experience, that the microwave can partially cook the meat during the thawing process and it also does something to the flavor and texture of the meat. I will usually take the shrimp out of the freezer a day or two before I plan on cooking, place it in a covered bowl, and defrost it in the refrigerator. If I am in a really hurry, I will place them in a colander and thaw under running cold water.
ABOUT GRILLING SHRIMP
Grilling this delicious shellfish, preferably on a charcoal grill, provides intense flavor and they hold up wonderfully on the grill. Some of the best types of ingredients that compliment grilled shrimp are acids like lemon, lime, orange, tomato and vinegar. One of my all time favorite ways to grill them is by first marinating them in a citrus herb marinade. This is especially wonderful in the summertime. It is light, healthy and goes great with an ice cold beer or glass of wine.
A NOTE BEFORE WE BEGIN
Keep the shells on when marinating and grilling. Many recipes call for grilling with the shells removed. This is not recommended as the shells not only provide great flavor, but they also protect the shrimp from overcooking and drying out. This is not necessary, but it is also quite helpful to keep the tails on as well. After cooking, the tails provide an easy way to handle the shrimp while eating.
GRILLED SHRIMP WITH CITRUS HERB MARINADE
1 Pound of Shrimp (Thawed if Frozen, Shells on & De veined)
1/4 Cup of Extra Virgin Olive Oil
2 1/2 Tablespoons of Fresh Lemon Juice
1 1/2 Tablespoons Fresh Orange Juice
1/3 Cup of Freshly Chopped Parsley
1/3 Cup Freshly Chopped Cilantro
2 Cloves of Garlic Minced
1 Teaspoon of Salt
1/4 Teaspoon of Freshly Cracked Black Pepper
4 skewers – Either Bamboo or Metal. (If using bamboo, soak in water for 15 -20 minutes before grilling)
Step 1 – De vein the Shrimp – Cut a 1/4 inch slit, through the shell, in the back of the shrimp and carefully remove the vein, leaving the shell intact.
Step 2 – In a large bowl, mix together all ingredients except the shrimp
Step 3 – Add shrimp to the bowl with the marinade and toss to coat. Refrigerate for 1 Hour.
Step 4 – When you are ready to cook, thread the shrimp on the skewers and discard the marinade.
Step 5 – Preheat your grill to high and cook for 1 1/2 to 2 minutes per side.
Well there you have it. You now have a good idea of what to do with those frozen shrimp sitting in your freezer. I hope you enjoy the included summer grilling recipe. Enjoy and happy eating!