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May 14, 2010 07:01 AM

Where To Find Spot Prawns

Hi all,
Being that it's spot prawn season, I was wondering if anyone knew of a place where you can find them in Toronto with some reliability?

I tried the 3 fish markets in St Lawrence last weekend, and 2 of the 3 didn't even know what I was talking about!!!?? The 3rd place told me they just don't carry them at all.

I'm sure someone must have some... can you help a Chowhound out?


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  1. Bill's Lobsters and Diana's Seafood. They may be in now.

    Bill's Lobster
    599 Gerrard St E, Toronto, ON M4M, CA

    Diana's Seafood
    2101 Lawrence Ave E, Toronto, ON M1R, CA

    11 Replies
      1. re: jayt90

        Advertised at T&T at $13.98/lb but from May 14th to 17th only.

        1. re: mramage

          I was at Warden/Steeles T&T this morning. Did not see any!! Only special was canner size lobster for $4.97 each!

          1. re: Charles Yu

            There's a small seafood supplier at Silver Star Blvd & Midland Avenue (South-West side plaza), they have a lot of Spotted Prawns and other goodies, including an excellent selection of oysters. The seafood place is next to a Tae-Kwon Do dojo and a Chinese comic book store.

            1. re: Charles Yu

              t&t cherry street has them, not terribly fresh though with many dead.

              1. re: pinstripeprincess

                Well I'll run right over and get some! This is typical of T&T seafood. Mainly junk.

                1. re: foodyDudey

                  Why do you still want to get it if you know most of them are dead ??! yuck.

                  1. re: foodyDudey

                    aging makes everything better!

                    can you contribute where you've seen a healthy selection of spot prawns? or perhaps verify (or dispel) a flyer sale ad posted here by a CHer?

                    1. re: pinstripeprincess

                      the ones at T&T promenade yesterday were fresh and healthy.

                      1. re: Chester Eleganté

                        I got the last 8 at T&T Cherry today and they were TOO alive, half hour later they were flopping and squirming as I ripped their heads off. It was a bit of a gong show in my kitchen, that's for sure. I could never be a chef, wayyyyyy too squeamish about all that.

                        But throw them in a pan with butter, garlic, parsley, mixed with some pasta, oh man were they good.

              2. re: mramage

                Don't go to T&T this time (the one at Warden has it, there is none in the one at Middlefield), I was there and the spot prawn and not fresh, most are dead ! Go to Star Lobster on Midland, I picked up 3 lbs of spot prawn, all alive, hugh, $17/lb ! I also picked up some huge scallop on shell, ~$6 each

          2. We got our spot prawns at City Fish just this week. All were alive when we got them home... and continued to move even when I removed their heads!!! They were the sweetest, most lobster-y shrimps I've had in a long time.

            1. Thanks for all of the recommendations.

              I probably should have specified that I don't have a car, so taking the TTC to Scarborough for spot prawns is probably not in the cards. Not that I haven't travelled further for food, I'd just be worried about how to keep them fresh for such a trek.

              That being said, I think Bill's is close to me, so I will give them a call to check them out, as well as the T&T that's downtown.

              Thanks again!

              4 Replies
              1. re: mochapj

                Every time I have seen them at Bill's they've been alive and hopping around in the aquarium.

                1. re: Flexitarian

                  I picked some up from Bill's yesterday, I think there were 16 and 15 of them were very lively, with one deceased, not sure if it died before or after they sold it to me. They were very good.

                  1. re: Danada

                    Two questions for all the spot prawn hounds out there: 1) how long can you keep them alive once you bring them home from the store, and 2) can you toss them in a hot pan with seasonings whole and still alive (meaning: can I avoid having to kill them one by one with my hands/knife)?

                    1. re: 1sweetpea

                      Don't know how long they keep alive, but yes you can just throw them into the pan. They protest surprisingly little when being fried alive as compared to when being doused in wine or handled. They'll live for a minute or so though and continue to twitch, if that bothers you.

              2. I just bought two pounds of huge, live, jumping ones from ' Lobster Island Seafood Co ' at 27 Milliken Blvd, Unit D, Scarborough for only $14.99 per pound!
                I love the approach they took in selling the prawns. First they use a huge net to scoop up the prawns from the main aquarium tank before putting them in a container. Then they ' hand pick' the live ones by hand and put them in a light weight plastic bag ( rather than heavy brown paper bags ) before weighing. This way, they eliminate weighing excess water that comes with the prawns and also ensuring the customer is getting the live ones and not with dead ones in the mix! Nice to see such ethical and fair business practice!!

                1 Reply
                1. re: Charles Yu

                  at t&t cherry street they were hand picking prawns straight from the tank into mesh baskets (drains water) and into plastic bags as well. if they grabbed a not so lively one it went back into the tank. if asking for larger ones, they easily obliged.

                  any dead ones remained at the bottom of the tank. for childofthestorm to have gotten the last 8 and them being lively, it must've meant they cleaned up the tank between when i and they went, so essentially at the end of the day.

                  my previous comment was to mark the lack of product available at the time and their state in case anyone was looking for 'cheap' prawns.

                2. This past week was the end of the season in BC if I"m correct. I tried looking for some on the weekend at T&T and Foodymart (Warden), but was out of luck.

                  Anybody still see them around? I'll give Bill's a ring tomorrow since I'm back downtown now. Didn't have time to check whether the Midland/Finch shop had them.

                  4 Replies
                  1. re: aser

                    I was in Bill's last wednesday and he told me the season was over.

                    1. re: haggisdragon

                      thanks, I kinda knew it but was holding out hope. Alas....

                      1. re: aser

                        Yes Aser, season is over for the BC variatal. Next thing to look forward to is the ' Florida live spot prawns' season starting in November. They should be available at the corner seafood store at Finch and Midland. Staring from $22 per pound they can drop as low as $14.

                        1. re: Charles Yu

                          HOPEFULLY there will be Florida spot prawns...cuz I'm pretty sure those are fished out of the Gulf, no?