Chef Folse's Boiled Louisiana Blue Crabs

Prep Time: 1 Hour

Yields: 12 Servings

Comment:

This is one dish that although quite simple to prepare, is seldom attempted by the novice. Hopefully, this recipe will entice you to try your hand at boiling crabs for success that is guaranteed.

Ingredients:

4 dozen live blue crabs

30 quarts water

6 medium onions, quartered

6 heads garlic, split in half crosswise, exposing cloves

6 lemons, quartered

1 pound kosher salt

½ cup cayenne pepper

1 cup granulated garlic

1 (4-ounce) bottle Zatarain's® liquid crab boil

1 (4-ounce) bottle celery salt

2 cups vegetable oil

24 small red potatoes

3 pounds heavy-smoked sausage links

16 corn cobbettes

2 pounds large button mushrooms

Method:

I recommend calling your seafood market a week in advance to order your blue crabs. Request an equal number of female crabs to male although there is a slim chance that they will honor that request being female crabs are sold at a higher price to Asian markets. Keep crabs cold until ready to boil. There is no need to wash or rinse the crabs prior to cooking. Under the nearest shade tree in your backyard, prepare a propane burner. A good propane burner is necessary to boil with the intensity needed for this recipe. In a 60-quart stockpot fitted with basket, bring water to a rolling boil. When water comes to a boil, add onions, garlic heads, lemons, salt, cayenne pepper, granulated garlic, crab boil, celery salt and vegetable oil. Return to a rolling boil then reduce to simmer. Cover and cook 15 minutes for flavors to develop. You may wish to taste water for salt and pepper and adjust seasonings to your preference. Add potatoes and sausage and cook 10–12 minutes then add crabs, corn cobbettes and mushrooms. Once water returns to a boil, cook 12–15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Turn off heat and allow crabs to soak, covered, 10–12 minutes. Testing for doneness and flavor after 5 minutes. Remove basket of boiled crabs and other ingredients, drain well and spread on an outdoor picnic table covered with newspapers. Allow to cool slightly and enjoy.