Tuesday, January 5, 2010

How to Make Shrimp Stock

The dirty way.

First, every time you buy shell on shrimp--even if it's just tail on--save those shells in your freezer.  You're buying per pound and those shells count as part of the pound.  Why waste them?

Every time you peel onions, garlic, and carrots, and chop celery, save the scraps and peels (except for any with bad spots) in your freezer.

My quick and dirty way of making any stock, not just shrimp, is to never buy anything specifically for stock making. 

I'm running a household here, not a restaurant.  Yeah, you right, girl!

Chefs usually saute the shrimp shells before adding to the stock.  That is supposed to release more flavor from the shells--like roasting beef bones for beef stock.  If I have time I do this.  If I don't...then I don't.  And I don't feel guilty about it or think that I'll go to foodie hell.  Honestly, I think my shrimp stock comes out A-ok without that step.

Add the shrimp shells and the frozen vegetable pieces parts to your pot.  Add cold water--enough to double the volume of the pot.  Peppercorns can be added if you have them.  Don't go buy any if you don't. 

Bring just up to a boil, but not a full boil.

Simmer for about an hour.  Shrimp stock doesn't require the all day simmering like chicken stock does. 

Some people don't make shrimp stock because they worry about shrimpy odors.  I don't find that shrimp stock makes the house smell like the dumpster behind the seafood market.  I think it smells like a yummy shrimp soup and it makes me hungry while it cooks.

Strain the stock, pushing on the shells and vegetables to make sure you get every drop out of them.

Let the stock cool.  You shouldn't need to remove any fat.  Shouldn't be enough to worry about.

Divide, label, and freeze.

Use in Shrimp Creole, seafood gumbo, seafood jambalaya, bisque, and so on.  Much tastier than using water.

No comments: