These tiny dried shrimp should always be a nice pink to red colour and quite soft. Do not buy brownish or rock-hard dried shrimp — they have been on the shelf for too long and will have lost their flavour. Before use, the dried shrimp should be soaked in warm water for about 20 minutes and drained well. They are good in stir-fries and are also used to make chilli and sambal pastes. They can also be caramelised and sprinkled over salads — just soak and drain them well, then toss in a wok with a little palm sugar until brown and toffee-like.