Cooking On A Budget: Fried Shrimp With Homemade Tartar Sauce

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Fried Shrimp With Homemade Tartar Sauce


You may think that you can't purchase shrimp while on a tight budget., however you can.  We all know that fresh is better than frozen - but nowadays most shrimp comes into a super market frozen.  If you go to a local seafood market the price is much higher and not for cooking on a budget.  A 2 pound bag of frozen shrimp16 to 20 count refers to the average number of shrimp per pound.

For the first time in a very long time, our supermarket offered the 16-20 count for a price of $7.99 per pound making a two pound bag $15.98. It's been at $19.98 or higher for a very long time. We decided to somewhat splurge and have one of our favorite meals: Fried Shrimp. Using about 1 1/4 lbs. of the bag we had more than enough shrimp for two people; in fact enough for at least four portions.

I broke down the cost of the meal based on four people. You are looking at around $18.97 for this fried shrimp dinner. Even if I am off by a dollar, I ask you: can four of you dine out in a seafood restaurant for less than twenty dollars?

The dinner was complemented by fresh lemon, homemade tartar and cocktail sauce, homemade fries and a side salad that is not pictured. This recipe is good. End result is tasty shrimp encased in a crunchy coating. I think these are as good as any summer or year round restaurant that serves fried seafood.

Your yield per two pounds of this size shrimp is from 36-40 shrimp. We find we get closer to 40 in most bags which means we get two meals from the bag and you may be able to as well. There are so many recipes you can create with shrimp.

Recipe Tips:
  1. When defrosting the shrimp make sure you do it in cold water.
  2. Remove the shells (keep the tail and the last section of shell closest to the tail on)and make sure all the black veins are removed.
  3. Save the shells in a container in the freezer to use at some point in making seafood stock.
  4. The spices used in the breading - you will need extra to sprinkle on the shrimp as a marinade.
  5. You can use a 3 inch deep skillet to fry, filling a little over half way with the oil.
  6. Fry the shrimp at 325-330 degrees and maintain that temperature throughout the frying process.
    Shrimp Recipe
    • 1 - 2 pound bag of frozen shrimp
    • Oil for frying - canola, vegetable whatever oil you like.
    For the Breading:
    • 2 cups white flour
    • 1 cup corn flour
    • 2 tsp. paprika
    • 1 tsp. white pepper
    • 1 tsp. table salt
    • 1/2 tsp. granulated garlic
    • 1/4 tsp. finely ground black pepper
     For the egg wash:
    • 3 large eggs
    • 3 tbsp. water
    1. After you have prepped and cleaned the shrimp, sprinkle the shrimp with white pepper, granulated garlic and paprika. Stir to coat shrimp and refrigerate for at least 20 minutes or longer to marinate.
    2. While the shrimp are marinating, set up a breading station. In one dish or bowl mix all of the dry ingredients along with the spices.  In another dish or bowl, whisk together the eggs and water.
    3. Dip each shrimp into the egg mixture allowing the excess egg to drip off, then dredge in the flour and shake off the excess flour. Lay the shrimp on a plate or small sheet pan and refrigerate for about 10 minutes. Do not throw the breading mixture away as you may need to re-coat the shrimp after refrigeration as the shrimp will appear somewhat wet.
    4. Next, get your oil ready. Over medium heat, heat the oil to a temperature of 330 degrees using any kitchen thermometer you have. (Pictures of thermometers are shown below.)
    5. At this point if you need to re-dredge the shrimp in the flour do so. Carefully place the shrimp in the hot oil, frying for about 2 minutes per side until golden brown.
    6. Fry the shrimp in small batches and remove from the oil and drain on paper towels. Keep the shrimp warm and continue frying until all are done.
    7. Serve with the homemade tartar sauce - recipe follows.

    Tartar Sauce Recipe

    • 3/4 cup mayonnaise
    • 2 tbsp. finely diced onion (sweet or red onion)
    • 2 tbsp. pickle relish, drained
    • salt and black pepper to taste

    In a small bowl combine all of the ingredients. Refrigerate until needed. Keeps in refrigerator for at least 2 weeks.

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