I had to chance to try these shrimp from the Wedge Co-op in Uptown when I volunteered to make some food for a friend’s birthday party. The menu was teriyaki chicken and shrimp spring rolls. I hadn’t had time to go to grocery shopping so I went to the Co-op that was near their place and bought most of the groceries there. I remember the bill being excessive, something around the range of $60 for what would’ve ended up being around $20-30 at a traditional super market. I’ll say this though, these were the best damn chicken yakitori and spring rolls I’ve ever made and I attribute it all to the quality of ingredients I found at the co-op and would happily pay the premium once my budget allows for it.
The shrimps are a little on the small size if you are used to larger shelled shrimp, about half the size of a normal cocktail shrimp. They come de-shelled and cleaned. They are called “Laughing Bird Shrimp” and are farm-raised sustainably in Belize. I steamed this in a steaming basket just until they turned pink. When I tasted them, whatever amount I ended up paying (I think something like 14.99 a pound) went out the window and all I could think of was how sweet these were. The texture was perfect too, they have a very satisfying unadulterated bursty shrimp texture (I don’t really know what the word for it is but it’s something I look for in every shrimp I eat). I do know that a lot of the shrimp that is sold in the US are treated with phosphates so that they retain more water. What happens is this lends to a weird translucent color and squeaky watery texture and taste that is epitomized in those ready to eat cocktail shrimp or in many frozen pre-made shrimp products. I find that this is more common in pre-shelled and cleaned shrimp you find at the supermarket. That’s why I always try to get whole shrimp with the shell and head from the asian grocery store. Those usually do not tend to be treated with phosphates based on my experience. Anyway, that was my rant on shrimp. I take shrimp very seriously! It’s one of my favorite things to eat and I will recommend to anyone to seek these out and try it for yourself!!!