Boiling on a Weeknight

I've always loved a good boil - cooking them for my closest friends from the San Juan Islands of Washington to thousands of folks at the Cavendish Beach Music Festival in Prince Edward Island, Canada . . . and of course, every where else in between.

The truth is - my boil is a melange of a New Orleans crawfish boil and a Georgia Frogmore Stew. Like any good cook, I'm always changing and adapting my recipe for what I have on hand, and of course, to my guests preferences.

Lately though, I've been making a 'date-night' boil for my wife and I to enjoy - usually with few cold beers or a bottle of chilled white wine. Though typically served to feed the masses, I find that a boil is easily adaptable for a casual dinner for two. And since I say 'date-night' - dare I say also elegant too!

And since most grocers allow you to source just what you need to make this dish - it's quite affordable too. Always a winner in my book. Did I mention you only have to clean one pot when finished? Okay, okay - I'll stop gloating!

Change things up a bit the next time you are looking for a new weeknight meal. And remember, try to source fresh local seafood and produce whenever possible - it will really shine in this dish!

Weeknight Low Country Boil

  • 2 Tbsp. kosher salt
  • 2 Tbsp. Creole Seasoning, plus more for serving
  • 1 Tbsp. cayenne pepper, if desired
  • 1 light beer
  • 1 lemon, cut in half
  • 1 onion, peeled and cut in half
  • 4 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 4 small new potatoes
  • 2 ears corn, husks removed and broken in half
  • 1/2 lb. Andouille sausage, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 lb. fresh extra-large Gulf shrimp, peels and tails on
  • Sliced lemon, as garnish
  • Chopped parsley, as garnish

1. Bring 3 qts. water in a large stockpot to a boil over medium high heat. Add the first 8 ingredients and boil for 10 minutes.

2. Next, add potatoes, return to a boil, and boil for 5 minutes. Add corn and sausage, return to a boil, and boil for 3 minutes.

3. Add shrimp, turn off the heat, and cover the pot. Allow the shrimp to rest in the mixture until firm and bright pink, about 5 minutes. Drain mixture and evenly plate. Garnish with lemon wedges and chopped parsley. Serve immediately.

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