30 Jan2015

P1050653

Yes, shrimp/prawns are graded by size. And at roughly 3 (actually a little less than that) pieces per pound or 6 pieces (with heads on) roughly per kilo, these mammoth black tiger prawns from the Nasugu market definitely rated an “extra colossal” grading. The photos don’t convey their massive size but at roughly 180 grams a piece, five of them weighed about as much as a small dressed chicken.

P1050635

At PHP800 per kilo before a small suki discount, I thought they were rather expensive, until I googled the equivalent in the U.S. and saw them on mail-order for $93 for one kilo of shrimp, or roughly PHP4,000 a kilo! Yipes! We had houseguests at the beach and I bought just 7 pieces of these prawns, which came in at roughly 1.2 kilos.

P1050637

After cutting off their “whiskers” and the sharp barb on their head, we slice them down their backs and removed the intestinal sac. I seasoned them with a squirt of fresh Dalanmansi or Kalamdan juice (more on that later), salt and pepper and generous amounts of butter with lightly sautéed chopped garlic and lots of chopped italian parsley.

P1050652

I put them on the grill over a medium-high charcoal fire and waited until the shells and head stunned a bright orange color. Don’t turn them over, just let the shrimp cook from below and watch the butter start to bubble and gently heat the thick shrimp meat. You may want to carefully re-position the prawns on the grill grates, but be careful that you don’t spill all the precious butter and aromatics into the fire below. This took just a few minutes to cook. I ate one piece just minutes after we took it off the coals and it was SPECTACULAR! Almost as meaty as a small lobster, with slightly more firm meat and a little less sweetness, but delicious nonetheless. If we were being good, just one of these prawns and a side salad would have made a terrific lunch. But we were being bad, and had lots of other things to help hide our belly stretch marks by expanding the skin even further… :)

 

COMMENTS:

  1. Betchay says:

    Yum-yum! I like eating the head with all the fatty goodness! But I usually buy the medium size ones as I find them more tender and sweet. :) you skipped your usual brining step?

    Jan 30, 2015 | 2:30 pm

     
  2. Marketman says:

    Betchay, yes, I cooked these soon after returning from the market, and they appeared incredibly fresh, so I didn’t brine them.

    Jan 30, 2015 | 3:01 pm

     
  3. Natie says:

    Woot woot!! Another great dish! Your hand gave us perspective of the shrimp’s size.

    Jan 30, 2015 | 9:53 pm

     
  4. Marketman says:

    Natie, the cook’s hand. I took the photo. :)

    Jan 31, 2015 | 7:50 am

     
  5. TeTcha says:

    Drooling at this time just looking at the pictures…:)

    Jan 31, 2015 | 4:39 pm

     
  6. EJ says:

    Delicious and a lot easier to eat than lobsters ;-)

    Feb 1, 2015 | 12:57 am

     
  7. Natie says:

    They really look sooo delicious!

    Feb 1, 2015 | 10:11 am

     
  8. Joey says:

    I’d put it on the grill cut side down first, just for 10-15 seconds just to get a bit of color and a lot of that smoky “inihaw” flavor then turn them over so I can top them with your butter-garlic-parsley-citrus mixture. Sinangag please! ;-)

    Feb 1, 2015 | 11:13 am

     
  9. Jules says:

    Nothing beats a simple yet delectable dish!

    Feb 2, 2015 | 8:48 am

     
  10. Edwin Wilson says:

    How can I purchase some of the Extra Colossal Shrimp?

    Nov 21, 2016 | 2:40 am

     
  11. Marketman says:

    Edwin, these were from the Nasugbu market, but you should be able to find some at the Seaside market in Pasay or at Farmer’s market. These might be bigger than usual, but suppliers should be able to obtain them for you.

    Nov 21, 2016 | 11:35 am

     
 

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