Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Low Country Boil - Part 2 - The Main Event

So today we have the star of the show -- the seafood boil!  Like I said on Monday, I did a lot of research to ensure the recipe was true to its Southern roots -- it seems everyone has their own version of a seafood boil/shimp boil/frogmore stew but I went ahead and took a page out of The Lee Bros. Southern Cookbook.  Their cookbook is fantastic and full of true Southern recipes that are easy to make and are made with ingredients that are easy to find.  Their book is pretty much my Dictator of Southern cuisine.  

Before I dive into the recipe, I want to give you some details on how I set my table for the boil.  I thought it was really important to make sure everyone was seated together at a long table so I could just dump the food down the middle and make it easy for everyone to grab what they want.  It makes for a truly interactive and fun meal.  I decided to go ahead and rent a couple tables and chairs for the event and I was pleasantly surprised that the rentals only cost around $35 -- and they made a huge statement.  I’ll be renting party supplies more frequently.  

As for the tables, I used plain old craft paper to cover them for a nice rustic look and used dollar store vases covered with strips of burlap {loving my gluegun!} and stuffed with baby’s breath.  The table trim is simply white and red checked paper cut into triangles and taped under the craft paper. Easy as can be!  And don’t forget about little buckets to collect your shrimp peels/tails and clam/mussel shells!  

For my sauces, I used squeeze bottles that I labeled with what they contained.  People really enjoyed the bottles {easy for passing, tasting, and dispensing} and they can be found in the candy making/wedding section of  any Walmart and are priced at around a dollar a bottle.

Now to the food!  There was one part of my Low Country Boil that I didn’t keep authentic and that is building an open fire for the cooking -- the laws in my area forbid it, so I went ahead and used my turkey fryer.  Their recipe is for 24 people -- I made food for about 15 so I’m going to give you my version with their broth/spice mix.

The Lee Bros. Lowcountry Shrimp Boil

1/4 c. extra virgin olive oil
5 serrano, pasilla or other dried red chiles, trimmed, slit down their sides, seeded and flattened
4 lbs Kielbasa
6 quarts Shrimp Broth/Seafood Stock
1 tbsp salt
2 bay leaves
4 lbs red skinned potatoes
7 ears fresh corn, each ear cut into 3 pieces
4 lbs fresh colossal-sized shrimp
10 dozen clams, cleaned
5 dozen mussels, cleaned
  1. Heat up your turkey fryer and add oil to the pot.  When the oil shimmers, add the chiles to the pot and gently toast them until they discolor and release some of their fragrance, about 30 sec.  Add the sausage and stir until browned on most surfaces, 10 to 12 minutes.  Remove chiles and sausage from pot and reserve in a large bowl.
  2. Add broth to the pot and stir, scraping up any browned bits and allowing the broth to boil and reduce a bit.  Add the shrimp boil seasoning, salt and bay leaves and cover.  When the broth boils, uncover and simmer vigorously until it has reduced by one sixth, about 10 minutes.  
  3. Add potatoes and cook until they have softened a bit but are not yet fork tender, about 10 minutes.  Add the corn and sausage and bring to a simmer.  Let simmer gently for about 10 minutes until the potatoes are easily pierced with a fork.  
  4. Add the shrimp, clams and mussels and stir.  Cover pot and allow to cook for about 3 minutes, or until the clams and mussels are open and the shrimp are pink.  Drain the mixture and dump out on table for everyone to enjoy.  Discard any unopened clams or mussels.

Bloody Mary Cocktail Sauce

2 small lemons
1 small lime
1 c. ketchup
1 c. heinz chili sauce
2 heaping tbsp prepared horseradish, more to taste
2 tbsp vodka
1 tbsp worcestershire sauce
2 tsp pureed canned chipotle chile in adobo, more to taste
1/8 tsp celery salt

  1. Finely grate the zest from the lemons and juice them.  Juice the lime.  In a nonreactive bowl, mix 3 tbsp of the lemon juice, 2 tbsp of the lime juice and all of the zest with the ketchup, chili sauce, horseradish, vodka, worcestershire, chipotle and celery salt until combined.

Orange-Saffron Aioli

1 large orange
Pinch saffron, threads crumbled
2 large cloves garlic, roughly chopped or grated
1 tsp dijon mustard
1 large egg yolk
1/2 c. extra virgin olive oil
1/2 c. vegetable oil

  1. Finely grate the zest from half the orange and then juice the orange.  Put 1 1/2 tbsp of the juice in a small bowl along with the saffron and let sit for 10 minutes. 
  2. In a food processor, combine the saffron mixture, orange zest, garlic and mustard and pulse until garlic is pureed, about 15 seconds.  Add the egg yolk and process for 10 seconds.  With the machine running, slowly pour the olive oil and vegetable oil through the feed tube until the sauce is thick and well combined. Season to taste with salt. 

1 comment:

©ChowGals - Designed by BDD