Monday, May 9, 2011

Crawfish Boil

Our neighboring state Louisiana is known to have originated many distinct traditions that no other state can claim, such as Cajun cooking, Mardi Gras, and crawfish.  But with the proxemity of the two states, it's no wonder that people in Arkansas love to adapt some of these traditions as their own, such as the Crawfish Boil.
 Here's what you need:  an extra large pot of water with a removable strainer.  Beer also goes really well with crawfish.  Nothing fancy, just your common beer from the corner market will do.
A heating source for your extra large pot:  see the Amerigas propane gas cylinder below.
Season your water with plenty of shrimp & crab boil packets such as Zatarain's.  Add salt, and if you like it spicy, jalapenos.  We also love mushrooms in our crawfish bath.
Then get a large tub ready.  Once the crawfish is added to the water, and it's boiled for about 5 minutes, or when the color changes from this (live):
To this (cooked) below:  it's time to scoop them out.  See how handy the big bucket is?  It's a great way to transport the crawfish!
You could use the strainer to empty the whole thing, but then you'd lose the yummy broth that you've made with the aromatics.  So save the water for now, if you still have the rest of the hundred pounds of crawfish to boil.  Keep filling up that bucket!  Then transfer it.  Here's the special made - for - crawfish table lined in heavy duty plastic with a hole large enough to toss your shells in.
You can fit a lot of people around this table.  A large trash bin underneath catches the shells for easy cleanup.
Can you see it behind the beer pong table?  BTW this was my first time to ever witness this!  The beer - drinking game in my college years was Quarters!  Wow!
Don't forget to add corn, smoked sausage, and shrimp!  The broccoli actually turned out great too!  Everything absorbed the spices really well, but nothing was as flavorful as the crawfish!

Thanks to our friend Brad Caldwell, his wife Lisa, and the "boilmaster" Chris for this outstanding meal/event!  If anyone needs a residential or commercial electrician, look up Tri - City Electric in Cabot, Arkansas.  My husband has worked with Brad, and he says that he's a pretty good "hand."  :) 

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