The Texas gulf is home to three native species
of shrimp, each with its own unique characteristics.
A nocturnal species caught in deeper, offshore waters, brown shrimp have
a bold, distinctive flavor.
Tender white shrimp are usually caught near shore and have
a sweet flavor.
A less common variety in the Texas marketplace, pink shrimp have a firm,
tender texture and mild sweet taste.
Always request wild-caught Texas Gulf shrimp at the seafood counter. Follow these rules to ensure premium quality and safe preparations.
Shrimp are sized and sold by count (number of shrimp) per pound either whole or with the head off. A lower count means a larger shrimp size.
How much to buy?
Versatile Texas shrimp make a great addition to almost any meal – whether grilled to perfection for mouth-watering surf and turf, or sautéed, boiled, deep fried, broiled, breaded or pan-seared.
The key to cooking shrimp is to avoid overcooking. When cooked correctly, shrimp will retain a firm texture and be pink and slightly opaque. Some cooks use the spring test to ensure proper cooking times. This involves holding the shrimp upside down by the head and pulling the tail down. If cooked, the tail will spring back. If not, it needs to cook a little longer.
Approximate cooking times also can be determined from reading the product size packaging. Obviously, smaller shrimp will need less time to cook than larger choices.
Hold onto the tail while gently removing the shell around the body. At this point you can detach the tail completely or leave it on for presentation.
Whether or not to devein shrimp is a matter of personal preference. In general, small and medium shrimp do not need deveining except for cosmetic purposes. However, the vein of larger shrimp should generally be removed.
When selecting wine for your shrimp dish, use the dominant flavors in your recipe to determine your wine. A Texas Viognier brings out the subtle flavor of shrimp splashed with lemon, while a crisp Pinot Grigio is also a classic pairing.
Texas shrimp is high in protein, low in fat and packed with essential amino acids. A moderate portion, nine to 12 medium-sized shrimp, contains about 150 milligrams of cholesterol, which is still well under standard dietary recommendations of less than 300 milligrams of cholesterol per day.
Marinate shrimp in the refrigerator, not on the counter. Discard the marinade after use, as it can contain bacteria and raw fluids. If you need to use the marinade as a sauce, reserve a portion before adding the raw shrimp, or make extra sauce.