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Shrimp heads


lennyk
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I just cleaned some very large shrimp, I am wondering if there are any tips on frying the heads if possible or any other way of not disposing of them in the garbage ?

Edited by lennyk (log)
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I just made shrimp stock today!

I was makign a red curry shrimp and used the shells (alas, no heads) fro the stock. If I had heads, it would have been even better.

The shells will keep well in the freezer and don't take up much room.

Preach not to others what they should eat, but eat as becomes you and be silent. Epicetus

Amanda Newton

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At some Japanese restaurants when you order ama ebi sushi you are served the shrimp bodies over rice as sushi and the heads are served seperately after being deep fried in tempura batter.

If you wanted to cook shrimp heads at home, I imagine that any good tempura batter would work.

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I just cleaned some very large shrimp, I am wondering if there are any tips on frying the heads if possible or any other way of not disposing of them in the garbage ?

David Thompson suggests making prawn (shrimp) stock by simmering the shells and "especially the flavoursome prawn heads" for 15-20 minutes. You can use the stock to make tom yam goong (hot and sour prawn soup). If I recall correctly, some Chinese and Vietnamese stir-fries call for whole, head-on shrimp.

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A nice way we always used them in my house growing up is as a flavoring for vegetables. My favorite version is with zucchini:

Take about 1/2 cup of sliced onion, and sweat over medium heat in 1 TB neutral oil with a little salt. When onion is translucent, add about 1/4-1/2 tsp cayenne and 1/4 tsp turmeric. Fry till fragrant, add in 1 tsp chopped garlic and 1/2-1 lb shrimp heads. Saute for about 1 minute, then add in about 1 lb. zucchini, sliced into thick half-moons. Add about 1/2 cup water, salt to taste (easy since the water will boil down), cover partially and and cook till zucchini is tender. Then turn up heat and uncover to evaporate water as you wish (I like to leave a little water as it turns into a sauce with the cooked down onions).

Serve with jasmine rice. Yum.

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My family has always cooked shrimp & prawns with the head on, and then sucked on the heads for the roe (or is that tomale?). Sounds yucky, but tastes damn good!

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You can fry Amaebi..(spot prawns) heads and eat those. They have a decidedly thinner skin then most other shrimp making them very crispy when cooked properly. You wouldnt want to try this with a standard N. American shrimp with a much thicker skin.

The heads are liquid gold to us chefs...perhaps making the best stock..in my opinion much better than lobster shells.

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Shrimp stock, absolutely.

Sprinkle the heads with salt and pepper and saute in a little butter or vegetable oil for a couple minutes until they start to turn orange. Add some onion, celery and bay leaf and enough water to cover the heads. Cover the pan and simmer for about 1/2 hour. Taste for salt and pepper. Strain the heads out and reduce the stock a bit if it's thin.

I use it to make shrimp and grits and as a stock for bouillabaisse, it is liquid gold.

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Here is a Shrimp Bisque Recipe from eG member Timh who is a chef in Plymouth Mass.

He's using fresh Gulf of Maine shrimp caught in winter.

"I took the habit of asking Pierre to bring me whatever looks good today and he would bring out the most wonderful things," - bleudauvergne

foodblogs: Dining Downeast I - Dining Downeast II

Portland Food Map.com

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At some Japanese restaurants when you order ama ebi sushi you are served the shrimp bodies over rice as sushi and the heads are served seperately after being deep fried in tempura batter. 

This is a great way to eat a whole shrimp. :)

Jeff Meeker, aka "jsmeeker"

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