How to peel a prawn

There’s no right or wrong way when it comes to peeling a prawn and the preparation is part of the enjoyment of eating them.

Here’s a few easy steps to have you peeling a prawn like a pro:

Start with the head

You want to remove the head using a twisting motion, best to do this away from you…Once the heads off, put it to the side, however don’t throw them away you may need them later.

Remove the legs 

Starting from where the head was, you want to remove the legs working your way back towards the tail. The shell on top on the prawn will peel away with the legs, if not, then that brings us to our next step.

Remove the shell 

You should be able to feel the difference without the shell on the prawn, so if there is some shell remaining all you need to do is simply peel from the underside of the prawn and the little fella should pop out.

Take the ‘poo-chute’ out 

This step isn’t the most pleasant as you’ll want to remove the ‘poo-chute’. Hold the prawn with one hand, using the other to pull the vein out along the spine of the prawn, from one end to the other. You can also use a knife to make a fine incision along the spine and pull the vein out that way.

You’re done!

Congratulations, you’ve successfully peeled a prawn. Now I’d advise you to wash your hands before tucking in… and for better presentation, leave the tails intact when serving.

Now remember I said not to throw out the heads — they make a great base for stocks and broths, so they are worth keeping. If you are throwing them out it’s best to double wrap them in plastic and store them in the freezer until bin night, they tend to get a bit smelly if left in the bin for a few days.

Written by Adelaide Fenech

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