Why not do your own boil? Many reputable outfits, such as Tony’s Seafood, Louisiana Crawfish
Company, and Crawfish Company of Central Florida, will ship live crawfish on ice at reasonable prices. Gregg Sedotal, a crawfish fisherman from Pierre Part, Louisiana (“Cajun Country”), gave us this recipe.
Game plan: Unless you bought them prepurged, the crawfish will have to be soaked in an ice chest full of fresh water for about 10 minutes before cooking, to clean their exterior and cause them to spit up the swampy muck in their intestines.
Special equipment: A Bayou Classic 80-quart aluminum stockpot with a strainer insert is a must. If you want to do the boil outside, which is traditional and highly recommended, an outdoor gas burner is necessary as well. If you don’t have either, borrow ’em; if you can’t borrow ’em, buy ’em—they’re available as a set that you can use again at Thanksgiving to fry your turkey.
Published March 22, 2007
- 1Find out if your crawfish have been purged. If they haven’t, soak in fresh water for 10 minutes (some people say you need to salt—you don’t).
- 2While you’re waiting, fill an 80-quart pot (fitted with a strainer insert) halfway with water and bring to a boil over a large outdoor burner over high heat. Add hot sauce, salt, Zatarain’s, and cayenne pepper.
- 3Add potatoes and onions to the pot. (No need to peel either.) Boil vegetables for about 10 minutes. Meanwhile, cover a table with newspapers, flattened cardboard boxes, or plastic trays for serving the crawfish.
- 4Add half the crawfish to the pot. After 5 minutes turn off the heat, cover, and let the crawfish steep to absorb the flavors for 15 to 20 minutes. Drain and dump onto the table. Repeat with the rest of the crawfish (you can boil 2 to 3 batches of crawfish in the same water-seasoning mixture).
- 5Eat plain or with dippin’ sauces like cocktail sauce, mayonnaise, ketchup, or Tabasco.