Big Shrimping: How to host a Seafood Boil

Big Shrimping: How to host a Seafood Boil

 

It’s Winter time in the Pacific Northwest; prime time to be dreaming up fun ideas for the upcoming Spring and Summer Seasons, i.e..when the weather improves. However, I am also a fan of dreaming it and doing it, and let the weather just do it’s thing. This is why today, on January 30th, i’m introducing you to the amazing, (and somewhat Summery-feeling) Seafood Boil, and encourage you to just go for it. In the South, we grew up hosting a ‘Shrimp Boil’ every couple of weeks. It’s a rustic, social, interactive food event, and that’s why I love it!  You pretty much just boil a bunch of water and old bay seasoning, and toss in corn, baby potatoes, sausage, and add seafood near the end. Then you strain out the water, and pour the contents out onto a table (picnic table or makeshift outdoor table) lined with newspaper.  Serve it with cornbread, cold beer, cocktail sauce (an essential in the South), and you’ll create food memories for kids and adults that will last a lifetime. Boom!  As a kid i’m pretty sure I just loved the cornbread, but that’s another story. Here at EWA, we will be encouraging these types of food events throughout the lifespan of this blog; food events which are simple in cooking technique, and may just get you outside with a bunch of your friends.  Because, people, that is what it’s all about.

Big Shrimping: How to host a Seafood Boil
Author: 
Recipe type: Seafood, Group meal, Rustic
Cuisine: Seafood
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8-10 servings
 
A Seafood boil is one of the best ways to eat; rustic and easy for you to prepare. Plus, your friends can all get their hands dirty, as it's an interactive and social type of meal to enjoy!
Ingredients
  • 4 lemons, halved
  • 1 cup Old Bay Seasoning
  • 2 heads Garlic, broken into cloves (don't worry about peeling them)
  • 2 large Onions, peeled and quartered
  • Big Handul of fresh Thyme
  • 2 lbs Baby Potatoes
  • 2 lbs Smoked Sausage (I prefer Andouille, but Turkey Sausage is also great)
  • 8 ears Corn, husked, cut into 3 pieces*
  • 3 lbs Shrimp, shell-on*
  • 2-3 lbs fresh Crab*
  • Cocktail Sauce
  • 1 cup Ketchup (Portland Ketchup is a great brand)
  • 2 cloves Garlic, grated
  • 2 T. Worcestershire sauce
  • ½ cup prepared horseradish
  • 1 lemon, juiced
Instructions
  1. Fill a large pot with 8 quarts of water.
  2. Add the lemon halves, Old Bay, Garlic, Onion, and fresh Thyme.
  3. Bring the water to a simmer and add the potatoes, sausage and corn. Add the Old Bay, garlic and onion. Cover and bring to a boil, about 10 minutes, until the potatoes are just tender.
  4. Next, add the seafood. (Shrimp will be done in about 4 minutes, when they start to curl are no longer translucent, and the Crab will be done in 5-8 minutes, depending on the size of the crab!)
  5. While the seafood is cooking, add all of the Cocktail sauce ingredients to a bowl and whisk together.
  6. Line an outdoor table with newspaper, and set out the cocktail sauce, your favorite hot sauce, cold beers or ciders, cornbread, a couple of bowls for the shrimp shells/crab shells, and anything else that sounds tasty.
  7. When the seafood is cooked, strain out the water, and pour the drained contents onto the newspaper.
  8. Tell your friends to dig in!
  9. Notes:
  10. *As we always say, know your seafood! There are many types of Shrimp out there these days, so please buy from a good source or a Fishmonger that you can trust. If you do not trust the Shrimp, just add your favorite fish, crayfish, or stick to a Crab boil!
  11. *Note that the Crab cooking time will differ, depending on the variety and the size of crab. Crab Crackers and pickers are also a good idea to have out for your guests, especially if you are serving Dungeness or Blue Crab, which have a hard carapace (shell).

*Note: If you’re planning to get serious about this seafood boil business, the The Bayou Classic is for you. Check it.

 

*Fresh Dungeness Crab, caught outside of Sitka, Alaska. Be sure to measure your crab to make sure that they are legal to keep. Otherwise, toss them back and let those babies grow!



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