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Shrimp Question...

On our trip to SGI in April we bought some shrimp to take back north with us. Have always purchased shrimp from Dail's in the past for eating there and packed in ice for the trip home and lately serving sizes frozen in water. This year with additional guests from MI who wanted to bring shrimp back as well, I had limited room in the freezer to get our shrimp packed and frozen ahead of time. After fishing with Chris Sapp in Carrabelle a couple days prior to departure I bought some IQF shrimp from Millander's (sp) Seafood. Have been eating them since then but have a few questions for the seafood afiicionados:

These particular shrimp are "dirtier" than the "fresh" ones--swimmerets and tails appear algae stained or otherwise blackish/green. Some still have this appearance when peeled.

When de-veining them, many have a large amount of orange-ish material along the dorsal vein...what is it?

These taste saltier than the "fresh" shrimp--is it due to the IQF process using saltwater either aboard ship or in the plant?

Many of them have a more "orange" appearance to the flesh BEFORE cooking. I always thought that indicated a shrimp that has been dead a while...live/fresh shrimp appear more gray/translucent. Are these potentially dead for a while before the IQF process?

They taste OK, but not quite like the other "fresh" ones! Heading to the kitchen to saute' some right now...will wait until after dinner is long over to read the replies!:)

Replies

  • eddiejoeeddiejoe Posts: 602 Officer
    Most shrimp sold as fresh are IQF shrimp that have been thawed. If they are heads on and especially if bay shrimp they are likely fresh. I also have bought IQF shrimp from Millenders, and I didn't like them all that much. He has some heads on that are better, usually. The orange material along the dorsal part of the Shri p is eggs, most likely. That doesn't mean the quality is low. If you can buy the shrimp off the boat in carrabelle they are excellent.
    Ej
  • GANDERGANDER Posts: 371 Deckhand
    Thanks EJ...having seen a piece on Forgotten Coast TV a couple years back about the shrimp industry and on-ship quick freeze I wondered if that might be the case. One of the locals we talked to said it depended on the boat and that some of the processors freeze them and then depending on who's selling they thaw them.

    Dail's has always contended they were fresh from their boat...not sure if that's the standard line for the tourists or not...

    Doug's had some that my b-i-l bought...I thought they were rather orange under the shell...looked to have been around a while, but he was happy with them.

    Eggs: wondered if that were the case...some of the orange mat'l also had some greenish tint.

    Would the bay (you mean Appalachicola Bay?) shrimp tend to have more color/algae/etc in their shells/swimmerets vs Gulf shrimp? the ones I'm referring to were headless. Head on for the same size were actually more expensive with the discount he gave me for weight purchased.

    I wondered if maybe they were aquacultured from a brackish pond...are they doing that along the Gulf?

    We enjoyed the taste of the Gulf tonight--sauteed in garlic and butter with a little wheat linguine alfredo and a glass of Riesling...mmm! Only thing better would to have been eating it while watching the waves rolling on the beach!
  • eddiejoeeddiejoe Posts: 602 Officer
    GANDER wrote: »
    Thanks EJ...having seen a piece on Forgotten Coast TV a couple years back about the shrimp industry and on-ship quick freeze I wondered if that might be the case. One of the locals we talked to said it depended on the boat and that some of the processors freeze them and then depending on who's selling they thaw them.

    Dail's has always contended they were fresh from their boat...not sure if that's the standard line for the tourists or not...

    Doug's had some that my b-i-l bought...I thought they were rather orange under the shell...looked to have been around a while, but he was happy with them.

    Eggs: wondered if that were the case...some of the orange mat'l also had some greenish tint.

    Would the bay (you mean Appalachicola Bay?) shrimp tend to have more color/algae/etc in their shells/swimmerets vs Gulf shrimp? the ones I'm referring to were headless. Head on for the same size were actually more expensive with the discount he gave me for weight purchased.

    I wondered if maybe they were aquacultured from a brackish pond...are they doing that along the Gulf?

    We enjoyed the taste of the Gulf tonight--sauteed in garlic and butter with a little wheat linguine alfredo and a glass of Riesling...mmm! Only thing better would to have been eating it while watching the waves rolling on the beach!

    Bay shrimp in our area are usually caught inshore with smaller boats that don't have freezing capability, and most boats fish in Apalachicola Bay and St. George Sound. Shrimp migrate from inshore to offshore, and the bay shrimp are usually smaller but not different color. There are several species caught during the year and they look a little different, don't know which one(s) you are buying. No aquaculture shrimp in Florida, those all come from elsewhere. Prices are funny, the heads on are often cheaper because they are mediums and after taking the head off the price per pound is fairly high but IMO fresh is usually best. Most of the IQF shrimp are large or jumbos, and are tails, no head to throw away. I have eaten many IQF shrimp that were really good, and if I didn't know ahead of time I would not be able to tell they had been frozen. One advantage for IQF shrimp is that the big boats stay offshore several days (usually) and freezing product right away at sea can often produce better shrimp on the table than when they were sitting on ice for that same time, and then sold several days after that to us as "fresh".
  • dewyafishdewyafish Posts: 5,025 Admiral
    ferris1248 wrote: »
    What EJ said.

    The saltiness you've encountered is because most IQF shrimp are frozen in a brine solution. You need to process these shrimp in running COLD water for 4-5 minutes to remove the salt. DO NOT USE tepid, warm or hot water to process.

    Cold water only. Anything else can give you a poor end product.

    I buy mine IQFed, pack them on ice and bring them back up to Atlanta. By the time we're here they are usually thawed. I'll vacuum seal and refreeze and the product is hard to tell from fresh, months later.

    ^^^^YEP^^^^
    There's nothing more enjoyable than suprise morning sex...
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    Unless you happen to be in jail at the time.
  • hooknredshooknreds Posts: 2,461 Captain
    Peel, eat, repeat!!
  • GANDERGANDER Posts: 371 Deckhand
    Thanks to all! Will try the freshwater flush on the next batch of IQF. Probably won't go that route again if space to freeze them is available before we head home. Man I miss that island!
    Of course, hanging around this board and reading about all the kicka$$ fishing you guys are doing doesn't make the absence any easier...How long 'til retirement?
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