Hi. I buy shrimp at a few local grocery stores to *saute once in a while. The ones I buy defrosted seem to cook up with a firmer flesh. I don't overcook them but they get this nice firmness and get a very light char on the outer ridge. Definitely not overcooked but a better appearance and overall texture. When I cook them from a bigger bag after defrosting they're tasty but they lack that specific firmness. I'm not sure that firmness is the right word but it feels like it fits. I rest them on paper towels before cooking so they don't stick to the pan and it helps, but I'd like the firmness I get from grocery store defrosted ones without buying pre-defrosted. Especially since the ones at my local store tend to have black spots. I defrost frozen, usually the same night I buy, using a colander and cold running water. I've Googled, but besides the two very not expanded on references to water-logged, I've found nothing. How do grocery stores thaw their shrimp? Should I leave them in the bag? Or put them in cold (not running) water? Shrimp's kinda pricey and a local discount grocery store has a two pound bag (that I remember buying and cooking in the past with that firmness) on sale. I'd really like to buy some for dinner tonight, but I want them to come out perfectly and unfortunately my memory is poor. I just feel like the last few bags I've bought frozen haven't come out as firm. So, tips?
*Due to heart health concerns I "saute" in just some light cooking spray or a half tablespoon of butter substitute in small batches. (Just enough for one person at a time). I expanded on this term because I know some people don't consider it proper sauteing. Basically a pan on the stove, no added water.