Shrimp Stock from 'The Adobo Road Cookbook'

Use this stock from Marvin Gapultos's new cookbook, The Adobo Road, as a base for seafood soups as well as the braising liquid for his Kale Greens in Coconut Milk.

Excerpted with permission from The Adobo Road Cookbook: A Filipino Food Journey--From Food Blog, to Food Truck, and Beyond, copyright 2013 by Marvin Gapultos. Published by Tuttle Publishing, a division of Periplus Editions (HK) Ltd. All rights reserved. Available wherever books are sold.

Recipe Facts



Active: 30 mins
Total: 60 mins
Makes: 8 cups

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  • 1 pound (500 g) raw, head-on, shell-on, medium shrimp
  • 3 cloves garlic, smashed with the side of a knife and peeled
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns
  • 8 cups (1.75 liters) water


  1. Peel and devein the shrimp, adding the shrimp heads and shells to a large pot and reserving the peeled shrimp for another use.

  2. Place the garlic, bay leaves and peppercorns into the center of a square of cheesecloth. Gather the edges of the cheesecloth together to form a bundle, and then tie it closed with kitchen string.

  3. Add the cheesecloth bundle to the pot with the shrimp heads and shells, and then add the water. Bring to a boil over high heat, and then cover the pot and simmer over low heat for 30 minutes. Skim off and discard any foam that rises to the top with a spoon or ladle.

  4. Remove and discard the cheesecloth bundle from the pot. Working in batches, blend the shrimp heads and shells, along with the liquid from the pot, in a blender. Blend until the shrimp heads and shells are completely puréed, making sure you use all the liquid from the pot.

  5. Pour the stock through a fine mesh strainer and into a large bowl. Push on the solids in the strainer to extract as much liquid as possible. Discard the remaining solids in the strainer.

  6. Allow the stock to cool completely before storing in the refrigerator for 2–3 days, or in the freezer for up to a month.

  7. Note: You can substitute the shrimp shells and heads with 1 pound (500 g) of crab or lobster shells, or even fish heads and bones, to instead make a seafood stock. Just simmer the shells or bones with water as directed above, and then strain the stock after 30 minutes. Do not attempt to blend crab or lobster shells, or fish heads or bones, in your blender.