Avoid Flavorless Shrimp with This Cooking Trick

Have you ever tried making shrimp at home before? It’s more difficult than it looks! Whether you were aiming for a simple shrimp cocktail or something fancier, you’ve probably run into a problem everybody who enjoys those little crustaceans has faced: bland, rubbery results when you were aiming for tender and flavorful. Thankfully, Thomas Joseph of Martha Stewart’s Kitchen Conundrums is here to show us the perfect, easy-to-learn technique for making shrimp you can actually enjoy.

The trick to getting tender, flavorful shrimp? It’s all in the method in which you cook the shrimp.

You might be used to steaming or boiling shrimp, but the ideal method for the best shrimp is actually poaching. This technique might sound familiar because it’s how you commonly make poached eggs, however, it can be used to make plenty of other dishes. In this case, it’s the perfect way to make the shrimp cocktail of your dreams.

What is poaching, you ask? Well, it’s essentially cooking in a flavorful liquid at a lower temperature, so it’s perfect for gently cooking your shrimp and adding flavor.

In his pot, Thomas added celery, carrots, and some aromatic herbs to season his uncooked shrimp. He then added all the shrimp raw and with their shells still on — cooking shrimp with their shells on is a great way to capture that flavor — and brings the pot to a light boil.

When the poaching liquid is just about to hit a full boil, it’s time to test one of your shrimp. Pull one out and dunk it in some ice water, just so you can safely handle it. To test your shrimp, you don’t want to go taking a huge bite; all you have to do is gently cut the shrimp open and pull it apart to check out the internal flesh. If it’s opaque and not rubbery to the touch, that means it’s ready to go.

Your shrimp as been tested and they’re ready to come off the stove. It’s crucial to take the shrimp and put them directly into an ice bath, this time to stop the cooking process and keep the shrimp at the perfectly tender place you’ve gotten them to.

Thomas also shows us his efficient way for peeling and de-veining shrimp, but if you want to his his tricks for that, you’ll have to watch the Everyday Food video below! Besides these helpful tutorials, Thomas also shares some helpful knowledge throughout the video, like what kind and size of shrimp is best to buy for this technique. Again, all this helpful tips and how to peel/de-vein shrimp like a pro can be found in the video below.

What do you think of this method for cooking the perfect shrimp? Do you have another way you love making your shrimp? Share your thoughts and tips in the comments section below.