Texas Gulf Shrimpers Harvest the Safest, Best Tasting Shrimp in the World
Even though Texas Gulf Shrimpers harvest the best tasting shrimp in the world they’ve been facing tough times in recent years. The massive importation of foreign shrimp has driven prices down & many Texas shrimpers are struggling to stay in business. Even after health concerns have been raised about foreign shrimp containing antibiotics and harmful chemicals, many Texas restaurants and stores continue to sell imported shrimp unbeknownst to customers. It is up to us to start asking the question, “Where does this shrimp come from?”
The next time you are in a restaurant or market and are thinking about buying shrimp, ask the waiter or grocery employee where their shrimp comes from. Most likely they won’t know and will have to ask the manager or chef who may not know either. If they don’t know where the shrimp is from, most likely it is from overseas where it is farm raised. If that’s the case, the shrimp are probably tainted with antibiotics and harmful chemicals.
So why would our restaurants and markets by these shrimp when Texas harvests the best tasting shrimp anywhere and knowing the shrimp they buy are smaller, inferior in taste and most likely harmful to…well, you and I. It all comes down to cost. Restaurants can buy foreign shrimp for less money. They still charge top dollar for the shrimp, but now they have a larger profit margin. It’s a win, win for them, but a lose, lose for consumers. And we, the consumer, haven’t a clue. Even big name restaurants on the Texas Coast can’t always be trusted.
So, what can we do? We can speak up! By asking the question, “Where does this shrimp come from”, we are bringing awareness to the subject. If we stop eating these tainted shrimp, restaurants will be forced to stop buying them. Being that shrimp is the most consumed seafood in the U.S., it will make an impact.
Texas gulf shrimping is a way of life for many families up and down the coast and is a vital part of our economy and Texas heritage. Texas Shrimp Association (TSA) is a non-profit organization that is developing strategies to educate consumers, lawmakers, press, environmental groups, and the public at large about the importance of protecting and growing the Texas Gulf shrimping Industry while maintaining a sustainable, environmentally safe product.
I attended the Texas Shrimp Association’s 67th annual convention May 4th at the Omni La Mansíon on the San Antonio River Walk. Thanks to a cooking demonstration by Chef Molly Fowler, The Dining Diva of San Antonio, participants at the convention were able to do a taste comparison of imported vs. Texas shrimp. Texas shrimp really are so much firmer, sweeter, and have a depth of flavor that is unlike shrimp from any other region. With each bite we understood why Texas Gulf Shrimp are the preferred shrimp of seafood lovers.
The Dining Diva’s Shrimp Dijon
Recipe credit: Chef Molly Fowler, The Dining Diva
Makes about 50 shrimp
1/4 Cup finely chopped Italian parsley
1/4 Cup finely chopped shallots (not green onions)
1/4 Cup Tarragon vinegar
1/4 Cup white wine vinegar
1/2 Cup Extra-virgin olive oil
4 Tbsp Dijon mustard
2 tsp Crushed red pepper
2 tsp Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
2 1/2 lbs. Large Texas shrimp, Cooked, peeled, tail-on
Process marinade ingredients in a blender or a food processor until smooth. Pour over the shrimp and toss gently. Transfer to a zip-top bag. Refrigerate overnight for best flavor. Drain marinade. Serve alone or with canapé toasts as an appetizer, or on leaf lettuce as an elegant first course!
Why should we buy Texas shrimp?
- It has the best flavor,
- It supports the Texas economy,
- It supports Texas jobs and,
- It protects the environment.
When you decide to buy wild-caught shrimp from Texas, you are buying more than a delicious product. You are investing in a way of life. Texas commercial fishermen stay committed to bringing you the best product. They along with state & federal agencies, local partners and university systems are constantly working to ensure that this renewable resource stays in place for decades to come. By following sound fishing practices, Texas Gulf Shrimpers are making sure that Texas Gulf shrimp continue to thrive in this favorable environment.
With miles of clean, sustainable coastline framing the Gulf of Mexico, why would anyone in and around the Lone Star State want to buy or eat shrimp from anywhere else.
To find out more about the Texas Shrimp Association, get a list of places who serve & sell Texas Gulf shrimp in your area, find recipes and so much more go to www.texasshrimpassociation.org. You can also follow them on Facebook.
**Full Disclosure: I was invited to the Texas Shrimp Association’s annual convention in exchange for my post. All opinions are mine.