Cleaning shrimps on your own may seem a little “gross” if you never do it before. However, it is actually not as hard as it seems. While purchasing already-cleaned shrimps are convenient, cleaning your own shrimps has its own advantage too. For example, you can keep the head of the shrimps and make shrimp stock.
Some of the frozen shrimps you see at the grocery store already have heads removed with tails on, or heads removed but shells and tails on, or heads and all shells removed. I personally try to buy non-frozen shrimps as much as I can. They really worth your money. The crunchiness and the sweetness of fresh shrimps are wonderful. Those cooked and peeled shrimps while they are convinient they don’t taste as good as the fresh, unpeeled, uncooked ones (of course you need to cook it before eating it). You can really tell the difference, give it a try and let me know what you think!
1. I prefer to work under running water and with a bowl of clean water ready at side. If the shrimps that you purchase still with head intact (shown here is not), then pull out the head and there will be “orangey” matter oozing out and just rinse it off with water. Proceed by peeling off the shell on the body and finish by pulling the tail off. If you want to keep the tail, then don’t pull it off.
2. Hold the shrimp with its back facing you. Use a sharp knife and run the knife down along its back and you will see the long black vein. Just remove it with your finger and you are done. Rinse the shrimps with some running water
If you plan to devein shrimps and keep their body shells, you can do so buy holding the shrimp, back facing you and run the knife under the tip of the shells and cut through the shells. Remove the vein.
1. Hold the shrimp with its already deveined back facing you and then run your knife along its back again, deeper this time and cut almost all the way through the flesh down the center of the shrimp’s back to the tail. Becareful not to cut the shrimps into half though 🙂
2. Use your hands to open up the flesh until you can lay the shrimp flat