The Shrimp and Vegetable Boil

We Louisianans love our seafood boils down here. Everyone has a special way, or  secret family recipe, that they cherish and love. As you will see here, it basically becomes a meal in a pot, and you can almost add any vegetable you want to your chosen seafood, and it is delicious. This recipe will feed about 5-10 people, depending on how much shrimp everyone wants to eat. (For those that can not get Cajun Land seasoning, or for a smaller version of this, no problem. If you are cooking for one or two people, and just want to cook a pound of shrimp, and some vegetables, then in a large stock pot, add about 3 quarts of water (12 cups), 3 teaspoons of salt, no Cajun Land seasoning, but you can add a 1/4 teaspoon or 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper to spice it up, and a little bit of each vegetable, 1/2 squeezed lemon, 1 bay leaf, and follow the same rules and cooking times). 

2 1/2 gallons of water (40 cups, or 10 quarts)

10 teaspoons salt

1 cup Cajun Land Boil seasoning

12 ears corn (I used the frozen sweet corn)

3 pounds creamer (small red) potatoes, skin on

2 handfuls of garlic cloves, peel can be on or off, but I chose to leave off so it would flavor shrimp more

10 stalks of celery

1 bunch of asparagus

2 large onions (I used Vidalia sweet onions, but you can use white or yellow), skin on, cut into 4

5 handfuls of baby carrots (or about 5 whole carrots-peeled and cut into big pieces)

1 pound button mushrooms (optional)

2 pounds smoked sausage, cut into 8 pieces (optional if not fasting can use)

5 bay leaves

2 lemons, cut in half, squeezed into pot, and then left over lemon tossed into pot

5 pounds whole shrimp, head on

HUGE turkey fryer pot with strainer, and lid, or crawfish pot with lid (I was lucky enough to have a turkey fryer pot that fit on my stove so we did not have to use the outside burner). 

On high heat, bring all above ingredients, EXCEPT FOR THE SHRIMP, to a rolling boil. ( I add the salt and seasoning from the beginning because we want as much flavor in the vegetables as possible). Because your pot is so large, and your ingredients are so many, patience is needed while waiting for it to come to a boil. Occasionally stir your vegetables. Once you have achieved the rolling boil, it is time to add your shrimp. Boiling time for shrimp is 2-5 minutes, in a covered pot, stirring very gently so that you do not break up any shrimp. Once they have cooked for 2-5 minutes, shut your fire off, and let them soak for 5-10 minutes. This soaking time will allow your shrimp to become seasoned. In order to release the heat, so your shrimp do not overcook, stir them occasionally, but gently, and you do not need to cover them. Now it is time to strain your shrimp boil, and place in a couple HUGE baking pans, or spread out on a table, outside, lined with newspapers. (Please make sure to let all of your items of your shrimp boil cool down for a few minutes so you don’t burn yourself from the heat, and also please make sure to wash your hands so you don’t burn your eyes from the pepper that is in the seasoning). Enjoy !!!!!

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The Shrimp and Vegetable Boil

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