Friday, April 2, 2010

I felt like Bubba Gump for a little while ~

My eyes popped the other day at the size of the prawns my friends Rick and Toni bought from a guy who brought them up from South Louisiana. They stopped by the church fish fry fundraiser while we were prepping, so they could pick up more ice to chill the shrimp. And so they showed us. It's just what we Southerners do. Got a big deer on opening day? It's in the back of your truck as you drive around town, so you can show people. Good deal on crawfish or shrimp, from down South? Same thing. lol.

Anyway - they offered to get me some next time, and I jumped on the chance. So today I had the fragrant pleasure of putting up 10 pounds of big Louisiana prawns. :)

I kept out a few to grill, and tried a recipe I found online, with lime juice, jalapenos, onions, and garlic, and a bit of other seasonings in there too. Wasn't too crazy about it. They were worth eating, but not as tasty as I wanted. I'll keep looking...

But the rest, I deheaded and froze. Some of them, I peeled first, some I left the shells on. And with the heads and shells, I made some fantastic shrimp stock and put it in the freezer, in anticipation of some yummy chowders and soups to come.

Laissez les bons temps rouler, y'all. :)

Take the heads and shells and rinse them a couple of times in cold water. Let them drain while you peel and slice 2 large onions; slice 2 large lemons; chop 5 or 6 baby carrots (or one regular type carrot) into chunks; and chop 2 stalks of celery into chunks. Drizzle about 4 tablespoons of olive oil into the bottom of a large stock pot, and heat. Add chopped/sliced veggies and lemon and the heads/shells of the shrimp, and cook it for about 5 minutes on medium high heat.


Add approximately 4 to 6 quarts of cold water to the pot, or however much it takes to cover everything by an inch or so of water, and toss in 4 bay leaves, a palm full of sea salt and a palm full of whole black peppercorns. Bring this to a strong boil, stirring occasionally, and reduce heat to medium or whatever keeps the pot at a steady simmer. Cook this way for 45 minutes to 1 hour, stirring occasionally to mix everything up.


Cool the cooked stock for a while, and then strain it into a big bowl or pot. Be sure to tilt the strainer and mash the solids to get all the juice out; it has a way of hiding up in those little heads and the strainer should be tilted all around to get it.


Discard the solids once strained out, and measure the stock into prepared freezer bags, labeling with the name and date. Freeze until use.


I don't know how long it keeps, but I would think it'd need to be used within 6 or 8 months, at the longest. You might want to google that.

Look at the size of those babies! And ignore my man hands. I gave up years ago on having delicate, ladylike hands. I mean, look at that thenar eminence. It's as big as the heel of a delicate lady's foot, for gosh sakes. LOL

And here are the skewers of shrimps ready to be grilled, with the marinade poured back on them until actually grilling on the rack. Like I said, they were okay, but not nearly as yummy as I wanted them to be. Back to the drawing board for grilled shrimp marinade. :)

1 comment:

  1. Man, those prawns look fantastic! I feel a shrimpfest coming on... If you like Thai seasonings, here's something you can try with some of those shrimpies. I've never made shrimp stock but it sounds like a great way to use up shells and have stock ready for something yummy.