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May 11, 2005 11:32 AM

Reporting back: How was that Sam's frozen shrimp?

  • d

It sucked. You could eat it, but that's about all you can say. Water-y and flavorless. At least the texture wasn't terrible, neither mushy nor rubbery. I give my Mom credit for not overcooking them. Of course the guests all seemed to like them, and there were fewer leftovers of shrimp than anything else(10 lbs of shrimp($100) for 42 people.) Go figure.

I think this might be how restaurants ease their way into mediocrity. God knows it was easy to dump pre-shucked, pre-deveined shrimp into boiling water. And since the vocal majority of guests seemed to like them, would I spent an hour prepping shrimp and making a special trip to the fishmonger on the day of the party to get them (instead of stashing them in the freezer for a week as my Mom did)? Can't really say...I was awfully tired and pushed for time as it was...

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  1. If you season the water with some lemon juice, garlic and fresh herbs, the flavors make the shrimp taste less frozen. And of course, the sauce is the end all to contribute to the great taste.

    8 Replies
    1. re: Moyn

      Unless you get your shrimp from the boat, unlikely in most locations, you got shrimp which was or had been frozen.

      1. re: Bill

        Isn't that what I said? It's frozen. It's not good. I'm not saying all shrimp that has been frozen is bad. I'm saying that the Sam's frozen pre-shelled,deveined bag o' shrimp is not good.

        1. re: danna

          You should always shop at an upscale fish market that has "fresh" shrimp (or prawns), costing no less than $20 a pound for 16-24 size. That way, you will know that you are eating the very best unfrozen shrimp.

          1. re: Jim H.

            I gather this is sarcasm.

            I find it interesting that so many 'hounds have taken it upon themselves to adamently declare themselves for frozen shrimp.

            I don't have an axe to grind here. I posted my original question merely to see who had eaten the Sam's shrimp . The response I got, basically telling me they weren't terrible enough to upset my mother over, was a good one. However, I'm reporting back in to provide information to board users.

            I buy my shrimp at a fishmarket. It is not "upscale". It is owned by an Asian gentleman who cares his product, is a good cook, knows me, and only lets me buy what is best. I've never asked him if those shrimp on ice have been frozen before or not. I don't really care, becasue they are delicious. They cost about $10/lb, maybe $14 if I get the 12count monsters. They are infinitely better than the Sam's bag.

            1. re: danna

              Well, I appreciate the feedback. I realize that the majority of "fresh" shrimp are previously frozen, but even among those there are definitely quality and taste differences, so it's nice to know this is not one of the better frozen options.

              1. re: Jujubee

                I agree that frozen packaged shrimp can vary among brands. There's nothing wrong w/ frozen and it certainly beats non-frozen when it's not always the freshest. I like the large frozen shrimp at Trader Joe's and have found Contessa brand to be acceptable. Didn't like Captain's Choice though.

                The main thing is that I ALWAYS buy w/ shell on since I believe it helps to retain moisture and flavor. Cooking w/ shell on is preferable too. I can see how in Danna's case the peeled ones were more convenient though, and seems like her guests didn't mind. I don't shop at Sam's or Costco, but I wonder if Costco's bulk frozen shrimp is any better (or are they the same company?).

                1. re: Carb Lover

                  The Costco in Sunnyvale and Almaden sell Contessa.

      2. re: Moyn

        Cook them in beer with shrimp boil.

      3. Thanks for the report. I find people in general (not chowhounds, to be sure) to be amazingly non-critical when it comes to shrimp. Your report is another data point for that.