Simply poached shrimp has a myriad of applications -- from the classic shrimp cocktail to gazpacho.
Fit a rimmed baking sheet with a wire rack. In a medium covered saucepan, bring the water, lemon, and bay leaf to a boil over medium-high heat; add salt. Reduce heat to low; simmer 10 minutes.
Raise heat; return water to a boil. Add shrimp; cook until bright pink and opaque, 1 1/2 to 2 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, quickly transfer shrimp to prepared baking sheet; cover with ice until completely cool, about 5 minutes. At this point, shrimp may be stored with the ice, in resealable plastic bags in the refrigerator, up to 2 hours.