Potato starch is renowned for its excellent thickening properties in soups and stews. However, it is also common in Japanese and Korean cooking to use potato starch when deep-frying foods like shrimp, as it creates a very light and crunchy coating. It is also useful as a gluten-free breading alternative to flour for those with a gluten intolerance. You can use potato starch just as you would all-purpose flour to batter the shrimp.
Fill a deep skillet or Dutch Oven with about 3 inches of vegetable oil. Heat to 325 degrees Fahrenheit. You can use a deep fryer, if you have one.
Beat an egg in a small bowl with water to create an egg wash and pour the potato starch into another bowl. Season the potato starch with salt and pepper to taste.
Dip the fried shrimp one at a time into the egg wash, then the potato starch, making sure each shrimp is fully coated. You can then repeat the egg wash and potato starch dredging if you want a thicker and crispier coating. You should only need about 3/4 to a 1/2 cup of potato starch for 12 to 24 shrimp, depending on their size.
Place the coated shrimp carefully into the hot oil and cook for about 3 to 4 minutes, or until the coating is golden brown. Remove the shrimp with a slotted spoon and place them on plates lined with paper towels to drain. Serve hot.