Eating Nose to Tail

This morning I was eating leftover sushi for breakfast, trying to think of what to do for my next post when I realized my next post was sitting on my plate.  A shrimp tail sticking out of a roll - with its shell still on.
I eat shrimp tails.  I always have.  I like the crunch and structure that they have.  Ross thinks I'm nuts - and he's not the first whose felt that way.

You can make stock with shrimp shells, but that's only if you've got a lot of them.  And when I was in Tokyo last year I had a tempura'd shrimp shell that was mind-opening, as well as whole shrimp shell on.  But other than that if you've got a lonely shell on the plate and don't want to be wasteful what's a girl to do?

My thinking is that they must be calcium rich, and I'm not dead yet so I'm pretty sure they aren't bad for me.  And although Ross is used to it (in fact he saves me the end piece because he knows I like it) when eating sushi with new friends I still get questioned about my tail-eating habits.

So my question is - does anyone else out there eat shrimp tails?  Or am I alone on this one?


12/07/2009 07:46

I am just jealous that you had inari for breakfast.

12/07/2009 07:49

i eat them too! but only a couple. i hate it when people dont even take the meat out.

12/07/2009 10:50

We have a scary amount of things in common, Sydney. I too love my leftover sushi in the morning for breakfast and shrimp shells. They make great stock too.

When I was up in Seattle last, I went out to a sushi place that had the rock prawns still moving in the display case. They prepared the tails raw and deep fried the heads. So delicious.

12/07/2009 13:26

@Amanda - It's a rare treat, but I love them for breakfast. Inari and onigiri make awesome breakfast.

@Tobi - Me too! It makes me want to take them off their plates and eat them myself! That might be too much information :)

@Joel - I love whole shrimp, especially deep fried. That's how I had them when I was in Tokyo.

12/07/2009 17:25

Sorry Syd;

I keep adding mine to a ziploc in the freezer for stock. Besides, they get stuck in between my teeth. No fun.

12/08/2009 03:21

I know they are edible, but never tried to eat them, as they always end up in some stock. I'll definitely remember this post when I make shrimps the next time. Aren't (shell)fish shells/bones always fried when eaten or can you also eat the shells from shrimps when you gently bake them?

12/08/2009 06:50

@Jo - Stuck in your teeth, I guess that's a good reason. At least you're saving them for stock :)

@Auldo - Most shellfish have exoskeletons, and some like shrimp are edible while other like lobsters really aren't (except for stock). Unless they are really soft I guess. I've never really thought about eating a lobster shell. Maybe the next post - thanks Auldo :D

07/12/2010 09:45

I eat them as well! I save the tails for last cuz they're just so good!

11/09/2010 17:34

I eat them. I love them especially if the shrimp is grilled. I recently got questioned about eating shells and tails. A woman stared at me and said, I've never seen anyone do that. I do wonder if they are healthy or if they are tearing my intestinal walls to smithereens. No one seems to know.

debbi bell
02/22/2011 15:10

I eat them to. I do not know why I do I just do! I thought that I was alone in doing so.

02/22/2012 17:41

I eat the shell and tails also. The shell on shrimp in Asian and other ethnic food is intended to be eaten that way. The shell being high in calcium and also as fiber content is healthy to eat. The only cautionary words are to make you you chew the food properly so you do not choke. Happy eats......

03/19/2012 18:40

I only eat the tails if they are baked or fried. I like them really crispy. I love them that way and always eat them. Ill eat the whole shell if its in that chinese buffet dish crispy with garlic. I do not like the shells or tails if they have been boiled or steamed. Then i pull or bite them off.

04/10/2012 09:35

Sydney, I have always eaten the tails of shrimp. Actually it's been since I was 3 years old and my Mom introduced me to shrimp on my birthday. I'm 41 now & still eating the tails, and it hasn't killed me yet! And I too, eat Sushi for breakfast!! YUM!!!

07/19/2012 00:42

First off, shells are delicious, I mostly only eat them fried, what's great is to fry whole fresh shrimp, no batter, then toss with salt,pepper,chilis, an a lil rice wine an vinegar. Delish. Once I saved over three Pounds of lobster, crab an shrimp shells, roasted them a bit and made a fantastic stock for a seafood bisque.

08/11/2013 23:43

I have never tried out shrimp tail. I also never knew that we can make stock out of plenty of shrimp tail. It was really a wonderful post. As I also like to try out new things your writing has really impressed me. I am looking forward for your next post.


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