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Old 02-07-2015, 10:54 AM   #1
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Question Cooking Wild Tiger Prawns

I have never cooked this raw large wild tiger prawns before. I know they can be fried or grilled but for how long, i.e. how can you tell they are done? When they turn pink? About 5 mins?

I am thinking of frying them with butter and some garlic - just having them in ciabatta rolls. Would they be better cooked in the shell (more flavour?) and peeled afterwards or is it tricky to remove the black vein after cooking?

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Old 02-07-2015, 11:31 AM   #2
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I have never seen "wild" tiger prawns or shrimp before. Only farmed raised. And when you say large, how large do you mean. 16-20 large?

Cook them like you would shrimp. Quick.
I like to cook shrimp in the shell as they seem so much bigger after peeling than when I cook them shelled and deveined.
But large shrimp/prawns will have a substantial gut (entrails) you want to get rid of.
You can remove the vein after you cook and peel them under running water.
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Old 02-07-2015, 11:45 AM   #3
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I have never seen "wild" tiger prawns or shrimp before. Only farmed raised. And when you say large, how large do you mean. 16-20 large?

Cook them like you would shrimp. Quick.
I like to cook shrimp in the shell as they seem so much bigger after peeling than when I cook them shelled and deveined.
But large shrimp/prawns will have a substantial gut (entrails) you want to get rid of.
You can remove the vein after you cook and peel them under running water.
These are quite long - 7"/17cm. I know they cook quick but how to tell when done? Just turn pink?

Yeah I think best cooked in shell for max flavour and devein afterwards (assuming the vein/gut does not contaminate the taste)
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Old 02-07-2015, 11:49 AM   #4
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I would cut the shell down the back and devein them before cooking and still leave the shell on. I think you'll have to cut one in half to check doneness. When the outside is pink, they may not be cooked through yet.
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Old 02-07-2015, 12:15 PM   #5
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These are quite long - 7"/17cm. I know they cook quick but how to tell when done? Just turn pink?

Yeah I think best cooked in shell for max flavour and devein afterwards (assuming the vein/gut does not contaminate the taste)
Are you talking about just the tails or are they "head on"?
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Old 02-07-2015, 12:16 PM   #6
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The jumbo shrimp I get here are big, but not that big , and they come shell-on, with a slice down the back and the vein already removed. I would never cook them with the vein in.

I rinse them under cold running water and run my thumb down the back to make sure all of the vein is out, mix them with olive oil and garlic and roast them shell on at 400F (don't know what the equivalent is in the UK). They'll turn bright red - I would guess at that size it would take about 15 minutes total, turning once.

You'll get varying opinions here about cooking them shell on or off , I think it adds to the flavor and helps keep them from drying out if the shell is left on. Some of the meat will be forced out the shell during cooking, you can see enough of the meat if they are done or not without cutting into them. They don't take long.
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Old 02-07-2015, 12:20 PM   #7
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Meant to add a pic.
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Old 02-07-2015, 12:32 PM   #8
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I would cut the shell down the back and devein them before cooking and still leave the shell on. I think you'll have to cut one in half to check doneness. When the outside is pink, they may not be cooked through yet.
Yes. If I were sautéing I'm garlic and butter with shell on id absolutely devein before cooking.
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Old 02-07-2015, 12:33 PM   #9
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Are you talking about just the tails or are they "head on"?
The whole unshelled prawn is 7" i.e. from top of its head to end of its tail
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Old 02-07-2015, 12:36 PM   #10
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OK thanks for your feedback. The way to go seems to be to keep shell on but to devein them and check they are cooked by cutting into them.
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Old 02-07-2015, 03:16 PM   #11
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Just to report back on cooking those large wild tiger prawns in their shells (I found no vein - either along the back or on the underside...perhaps it had been done; when I washed them, there was a little 'blood')

I fried them in butter and oil, lowish heat with some garlic slivers. The garlic had to be removed before it burnt. Difficult to cook evenly, given its shape and the curling factor. It was not easily to peel off the shell whilst it was still fairly hot but delicious taste though.

In hindsight, I think it would have been better had I skewered them along the head part and grilled them (brushed in butter). The metal skewer would have acted like a good heat conductor. Close to the head they are quite thick and so the tail part is likely to be cooked before then.
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Old 02-07-2015, 03:31 PM   #12
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I think skewering them is a good idea. You could also butterfly them. I love coconut shrimp done that way.
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Old 02-07-2015, 07:18 PM   #13
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I love my seafood cooked in garlic butter. I'd definitely peel and devein first. That way when they are cooked you're done and ready for that ciabatta roll.

If they are really, really large you might want to split them down the middle before cooking.
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Old 02-07-2015, 07:50 PM   #14
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Meant to add a pic.
That looks exactly like what I had a few night's ago! They were HUGE mutant shrimp!

I just sauteed them, deveined and shell-on, in butter, garlic, lemon, and a splash of white wine. I also tossed in some parsley and red pepper flakes at the end.
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Old 02-07-2015, 09:43 PM   #15
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That looks exactly like what I had a few night's ago! They were HUGE mutant shrimp!

I just sauteed them, deveined and shell-on, in butter, garlic, lemon, and a splash of white wine. I also tossed in some parsley and red pepper flakes at the end.
Yum! Every now and then I find shrimp that look like small lobsters. What a find, me thinks. I'll have to try them with a little white wine and red pepper next time. I have to have several grinds of fresh cracked black pepper, too. :-)
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Old 02-07-2015, 10:08 PM   #16
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When my husband was shrimping down in Texas, he would bring home about 10 pounds from each trip. I would rinse them and sauté them in olive oil/butter and some garlic. It was us to the eater to remove the shell and head along with deveining them. My husband like to eat his with horseradish. I like to dip mine in melted butter. After about three months of these feasts, we both got a little sick of them. So he would still bring some home and I would give them to my neighbors. Needless to say, I was very popular. So between lobsters as a kid and shrimp from my husband, I can look at both and not drool.
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Old 02-17-2015, 10:07 AM   #17
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Very low and slow. Sautee in unsalted clarified butter at very low heat. Protein strands become rubber bands when heated over 212 F.
They are cooked when the flesh becomes just opaque. After a few minutes remove one and try it. Prawns don't have to be served hot. Warm is fine so consider the 'carryover' temperature.
I leave the shells on but devane. Removing the shells is part of the eating experience.
No garlic or any other flavors to mask the delicate flavor of the prawns.
A squeeze of fresh lemon juice when served.
Hot damp individual hand towels for everyone.
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Old 02-17-2015, 10:26 AM   #18
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Please, whatever you do never boil shrimp or prawns. If you're not going to grill them, put them into something such as a soup or stew, bring the liquid to a boil and turn off the heat. Then, put the shrimp/prawns into it, wait three minutes for shrimp, 5 minutes for prawns and then serve. Boiling or simmering would make them tough, over cooked and rubbery. Heating just below boiling will keep them tender and a pleasure to eat.
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Old 02-17-2015, 10:47 AM   #19
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Very low and slow. Sautee in unsalted clarified butter at very low heat. Protein strands become rubber bands when heated over 212 F.
They are cooked when the flesh becomes just opaque. After a few minutes remove one and try it. Prawns don't have to be served hot. Warm is fine so consider the 'carryover' temperature.
I leave the shells on but devane. Removing the shells is part of the eating experience.
No garlic or any other flavors to mask the delicate flavor of the prawns.
A squeeze of fresh lemon juice when served.
Hot damp individual hand towels for everyone.
Opaque is not good enough for me. I want my seafood cooked. Having been married to a shimper, I know only too well what can be found in our seafood. That is why I will never eat sushi. I want my shrimp cooked until pink all around. And I don't care how long it takes to bring them to pink. One food I do know how to cook and do it well, is seafood.
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Old 02-17-2015, 11:27 AM   #20
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Opaque is not good enough for me. I want my seafood cooked. Having been married to a shimper, I know only too well what can be found in our seafood. That is why I will never eat sushi. I want my shrimp cooked until pink all around. And I don't care how long it takes to bring them to pink. One food I do know how to cook and do it well, is seafood.
Ya. Me too. I commercial fished off the West Coast for over twenty years. Did all the cooking on my boat. Owned and operated a restaurant specialising in serving fresh seafood.
It's nice to have someone on this forum who is an expert on seafood cooking as you.
What's your preferred method of cooking fresh halibut?
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