Tender Boiled Shrimp for Recipes

Tender Boiled Shrimp for Recipes
Have you ever had boiled shrimp that were tough and tasteless? This has happened to most of us at one time or another. Why do good shrimp go bad during the cooking? What if I told you that boiling shrimp is ruinous for them? I know! How else would you make boiled shrimp? Today, I’ll let you in on a secret that my father told me when he taught me to make this dish, more than fifty years ago. Just bring the shrimp up to the boil and turn the heat off.

Whether you make these shrimp for eating right out of the shell or using in a sandwich recipe, if you use this method, your shrimp should be tender and tasty. Of course, if you have a method that works for you, keep using that. Don’t mess with success!

Cooking Boiled Shrimp

For one pound of frozen shrimp.

I used a medium shrimp for this recipe. That means that there are 41-60 shrimp per pound. The shrimp were raw, easy peel, with the tail left on. I purchased them at Aldi, since they have great prices.

Use high heat for cooking the shrimp. In a 3 quart saucepan, add 1 ½ quarts of water, 2 teaspoons of salt, and 1-2 tablespoons of Old Bay Seasoning. You may also use your favorite shrimp and crab boil spices. Bring the water with the seasonings to a rolling boil. This takes about 15 minutes. Add the frozen shrimp all at once. Bring the water back up to a full boil. You will notice foam on top of the water and little bubbles all across the top. When this happens, turn the heat off and cover the pan. Set a timer for 2 ½ minutes. When the timer goes off, pull a shrimp and taste test it. If it is done, strain the shrimp using a colander. If it is not quite done, let the shrimp stand in the hot water, covered, for another minute before taste testing again. These shrimp usually take 2 ½ to 3 ½ minutes of steaming time after they come to a boil. If you leave them in too long, they will be tough and tasteless!

If your shrimp are smaller than medium sized, test them earlier. If they are larger, give them more time in the water. Cooking tender and flavorful shrimp is an art. If you continue boiling them until they are done, the proteins will coagulate. This means they will bind tightly together, and the result will be tough shrimp. Be gentle with your shrimp and cook them until they are just done. Peel the shells and tails off, and they will be recipe ready. Of course, you may buy precooked shrimp for a recipe. I just like the taste and texture of the freshly cooked shrimp!

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This content was written by Connie Mistler Davidson. If you wish to use this content in any manner, you need written permission. Contact Connie Mistler Davidson for details.