Jewel asks: When I was buying shrimp, I saw the word “count.” What does this mean?
“Count” in shrimp lingo means the number of shrimp you’ll get per pound. This is where size really does matter because the smaller the number, the bigger the shrimp. This is why you should always buy shrimp by count not size.
Sometimes you’ll find a “U” in front of the number 10 or 15. This means there are under 10 or 15 shrimp per pound. Buying shrimp by the count is a good idea because what one store sells as “large” could be sold as “jumbo” in another store.
Count is usually reserved for raw shrimp, head-on or head-off, de-veined or not, and peeled or unpeeled.
But lately I’ve noticed that some places are selling cooked shrimp with a “count.” Don’t forget that shrimp shrinks once it is cooked, so buy bigger if you can afford it!
Use this handy chart for a loose reference so you’ll always know how to buy shrimp by count not size:
|Size of the Shrimp||Count or Shrimp per Pound|