Sunday, September 2, 2012

Buying Shrimp Right Off the Boat

Pamela makes seaglass jewelry using pieces she collected in Connecticut in the few years we lived there.  She's been going to the farmers market here in Brunswick to sell her wares.   She also buys things because the stuff sold at farmers markets is always good stuff, fresh and organic.  Yesterday, she came home with a carrot cake, a jar of jam, and two pounds of shrimp right off a shrimp boat that docked next to the market.

mmmmmm....Maxine's homemade jam!

Now, these are wild shrimp, not pond grown, freshly caught here in Georgia.   They didn't come from a scummy pond in Asia.   Nor were they deheaded, deveined, and peeled, however.   They were complete shrimp.  I never saw a shrimp that wasn't in a shrimp cocktail until yesterday. 

Shrimp have spikes, one on their forehead and one on their stern, and long feelers.

So how do you dehead a shrimp?   Cut it off?   Nope.   This is from How to Dehead Fresh Shrimp


Place the shrimp in the large bowl.
  1. Hold a shrimp in your non-dominant hand.
  2. Grasp the head of the shrimp in your dominant hand and twist it clockwise while pulling it downward.
  3. Pull the head off and place it in the smallest bowl.
  4. Take the body of the shrimp and place it in the medium bowl.
  5. Repeat this step with all the shrimp.
  6. Pour all the bodies of the shrimp from the medium bowl into the strainer.
  7. Run cold water over the bodies of the shrimp, gently moving them with your hand.
  8. Rinse the medium bowl, pour out the water and pour the strained shrimp bodies into the bowl.
  9. Discard the heads in the small bowl.
I'm really glad they included step 5.  I can just imagine getting a bowl of shrimp with only one missing its head.    And step 9 too.  "Honey, what's that rotten fish stink coming from the galley?"

Pam thought yanking off shrimp heads would be difficult, but as it turns out, they pop right off.

We watched a YouTube video of how to devein a shrimp, which involves cutting along the shrimp's back and yanking out the vein, which Pam did.  Pam also peeled them.  She complained about how much work it was, but I gently reminded her that these were really fresh wild Georgia shrimp, and the best part is that they were only $3 a pound.   Pam gave me the look in return.  I'm glad I didn't mention that I actually did all the hard work, googling instructions and such.

Ruby turns her nose up at shrimp, but Chevy and Olivia love them.  They were all excited, especially Chevy who had that big grin on his face as he paced all around the saloon, knowing the treat that was coming.

 So how were fresh wild Georgia shrimp right off the boat?

Well, Pam said "This is bad.  This is very bad.   I'll never want to buy shrimp at the grocery store again."

Yes, they were that good.  Maybe the process of freezing seafood and then thawing it makes them lose flavor, I don't know, but these fresh shrimp were the best I've ever had. 

How much do you pay for a shrimp cocktail at the restaurant?   How many do you get?  Is it wild Georgia shrimp, or does it come from a polluted pond in Asia?   Ever since doing research for the magazine article I wrote for All at Sea Southeast magazine, I ask before ordering.

And yep, that was dinner last night.  Two pounds of succulent wild Georgia shrimp. 

Right off the boat.


  1. Well, we will call you when we need a few shrimps beheaded. We stop in at the shrimp houses along the NC/SC/GA coast and watch the fresh shrimp being beheaded.I bet you those that behead shrimp are great bottle cap flippers! Thumbs of steel! Your right, the shrimp are definitely tastier.

  2. wow...really yummy shrimps. . .cool .. love it. . is it sold it the market area?? what an awesome shrimp. ..
    wellhead compression

    1. The farmers market is right next to the town dock, so its really conventient to buy right from the boat.

  3. Georgia white shrimp are the best. Bought em at the same docks... good price and great shrimp.
    Now go to Darien and check out the crab. Softies are excellent!