This recipe is actually two recipes at once: the steamed shrimp and the resultant shrimp broth, which can be frozen and kept for future purposes. I like to use the shrimp broth as the basis for miso sauces as well as for suimono.
- a steamer
- about 4 little red potatoes
- an onion
- a lemon
- garlic, if you like (not necessary)
- Old Bay spice mix, or the equivalent
- about a pound of shrimp -- frozen is good
- clean the potatoes and cut them into wedges
- cut the onion into fairly large pieces
- clean the garlic but leave whole
- slice the lemon into rounds
- if the shrimp are frozen, defrost them by running cold water over them. I usually put them in a large bowl and repeatedly refresh the cold water in the bowl -- it warms up the shrimp pretty quickly without cooking them
- in the bottom part of the steamer (where the water goes), boil the potatoes until about halfway done. The easy way to do this is to put the potato wedges in cold water, put the pot on the stove and bring it to a boil. When it reaches a boil, just turn it off.
- Add the onion and garlic to the water and let it sit.
- Peel the shrimp but don't throw away the shells.
- Saving the water, move the veggies to the steamer part:
In the top part of the steamer, layer the lemon rounds, potato wedges, onion pieces and garlic cloves.
- Sprinkle with as much Old Bay as you like.
- Add the shrimp on top of the veggies and put more Old Bay on.
- Put the shrimp shells in the water that you saved from par-cooking the veggies.
Yes, really. BTW, shrimp shells can also be sautéed in butter or oil to add amazing flavor to a dish. If you have the heads, it's even better.
- Put the steamer part over the water, cover, and crank up the heat. Cook until the shrimp are done -- usually about 5 minutes, but check for doneness before declaring victory.
- Toss the shrimp and veggies in a serving dish and chow down. Melted butter would not go amiss.
- When the broth has cooled, strain out the shells and save the broth for anything that calls for a fish stock. It freezes well.