Is it called a called shrimp or a prawn?

IMG_3526Neither shrimp nor prawn is the correct scientific names they are both common names. Those names are both vernacular or colloquial names, you can say it just names people have made up. They have nothing whatsoever to do with the correct scientific names.

A little like with the word “human” we say we are humans, but “human” is the common name, the correct name is “homo sapiens”.

I think the easiest way to explain is that all species, whether plants or animals, has a Latin name, there is referred to, you could say it is the principal name.

Then each language their own name, and it is referred to as the common name. The Latin name has been established and approved by all countries. This is to make it easier and be sure that what we are talking about the same thing.

The common names in each language are, however, not been established and accepted by all countries. So, therefore, there is not some list that says what is correct and what is wrong.  And this is the case with shrimp VS prawn, there is not agreed on which word to use.

The correct name for the guys on the picture above is Litopenaeus vannamei. We can easily agree on we need another name. Can you imagine that you call some friends and invite them to a barbecue because you bought some quite delicious Litopenaeus vannamei you want to share with them? No, it won’t work.

So what should we call them shrimps or prawns? What I have found out is, generally, Prawn is used for the bigger animal and shrimp is used for the smaller animal. However, in America “shrimp” is more used on menus than “prawn” in England and other Commonwealth nations it is the opposite.

In Thai it is easier there is one word and it is “gung” and then there are the variations little “gung” and big “gung”.

On my site, i have made it even easier. For all the recipes i show a picture of the shrimp or prawn, there have to be used in the dish.

When shopping for the dish, only bring your smartphone and show the picture in the shop.

The nutrient fact, below, is based on 100-gram raw Crustaceans shrimps.




Fatty acids, total saturated g 0.101
Fatty acids, total monounsaturated g 0.086
Fatty acids, total polyunsaturated g 0.152
Fatty acids, total trans g 0.004
Cholesterol mg 161


Water g 78.45
Energy kcal 85
Protein g 20.1
Total lipid (fat) g 0.51
Carbohydrate, by difference g 0


Calcium, Ca mg 64
Iron, Fe mg 0.52
Magnesium, Mg mg 35
Phosphorus, P mg 214
Potassium, K mg 264
Sodium, Na mg 119
Zinc, Zn mg 1.34