One thing I love about vacationing on the coast is the availability of fresh caught seafood.  Shrimp are one of my most favorite seafood items, so I take full advantage when I have the opportunity.  This recipe is a wonderfully simple way to prepare shrimp so that you can really appreciate their flavor without a lot of other ingredients getting in the way.  Don’t get me wrong, I love shrimp in just about any dish (pasta, enchiladas, stir fry, etc.) but as they say, sometimes less is more.  I suppose these technically aren’t truly steamed shrimp since they are thrown into boiling water, but since that was the title of the original recipe and I don’t know what else to call them, I’ll go with that.  Be sure to remove the shrimp from the water as soon as it returns to a boil, as they can overcook easily and you don’t want tough and chewy shrimp.  I went simple with the side dishes for this as well and served it with a Caesar salad and some crusty bread.  It made for a fabulous and incredibly quick meal.  Yum!

Steamed Shrimp
2 quarts water
1/2 cup cider vinegar
Black peppercorns
2 bay leaves
1 lb. large shrimp, shells left on
Old Bay (or other seafood seasoning)
Lemon wedges and cocktail sauce, for serving

Combine the water, vinegar, peppercorns and bay leaves in a stockpot or large saucepan.  Bring to a boil.  Add the shrimp to the boiling water and cook, stirring occasionally, until the water returns to a boil.  Immediately remove from the heat and drain the water.  Remove the bay leaves and toss the shrimp with Old Bay seasoning.  Transfer to a serving platter and serve alongside lemon wedges and cocktail sauce.  

Source: adapted from À La Carte