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How to make
Low Country Boil

A low country boil is a perennial favorite here on the coast of Georgia. Easy to make in large quantities, it is a great main dish for a party. Though we find that not everyone likes all of the ingredients and so we pair a low country boil with a traditional covered dish to make sure everyone can find something to eat.

While we make our low country boil in the exact same setup (in terms of burner pot and strainer) as one could use for a deep fried turkey, it can also be made on a stove with a large pot.

The amount of each of the following will vary depending on the size of the crowd you want to feed, but you will want roughly equal proportions of the following. The amounts shown will create 16 pounds of boil, which with extra side dishes is enough for 30-40 people. We make three batches in varying degrees of spiciness to serve about 100 people.

  • 5 pounds—whole new potatoes (cut into quarters)
  • 3 pounds—corn on the cob (cut in half or thirds to make pieces about 3-4 inches long)
  • 3 pounds—sausage (polska kielbasa style cut in pieces 2-3 inches long)
  • 5 pounds—shrimp (with shells on)

Cooking the Low Country Boil
click for a larger photoStart by filling the container (we use a 30-quart pot for this recipe) half full of water and adding Old Bay Seasoning to taste. About two ounces of the Old Bay, which is a third of a large can, seems flavorful without being too hot for most, you may want more or less.

Bring water to a boil and add potatoes. Cook for 15 minutes and add sausage. Father Frank dumps a double-sized batch of low country boilCook for an additional five minutes and add corn on the cob. Cook for an additional three minutes and add shrimp. Cook roughly two final minutes or until shrimp is pink all over and begin to float. But be quick with the shrimp once they begin to float or they will get rubbery.

A commonly found variation is to boil each of the individual ingredients separately, but this misses the two main advantages of the low country boil—ease of preparation and the shared flavors of the various ingredients. Another common variation is to add crab legs to the mix.

We also offer a printer-friendly Adobe .PDF version of this recipe here.

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