Crazy for Crawfish • Tips for the perfect boil – Good Eats

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What is crawfish?

Also known as crayfish, craydids, craybobs, crawdaddies, crawdads, freshwater lobsters, mountain lobsters, rock lobsters, mudbugs, baybugs and yabbies  – call ‘em what you like, they are small crustaceans that live in fresh water and are similar in flavor to shrimp and lobster. Approximately 95% of the crawfish consumed in the United States are harvested from Louisiana.

Backyard barbecues are fun, but for a truly good time, a crawfish boil is where it’s at! If you are a crawfish boil beginner, the whole process – from all the needed equipment to the big bag of live crustaceans – can be a bit intimidating. But have no fear, once you’ve gathered your gear and gone through the process you are sure to be hooked! Here’s what you need to let the good times roll: 

Live Crawfish

Make sure you buy your crawfish live and right before you plan to boil them. As a good rule of thumb you will need about three to five pounds of crawfish per guest. 

A Large Pot and Large Ice Chest

You will need a pot big enough to hold two quarts of liquid for every pound of crawfish. You also need a gas or propane burner big enough to hold your pot and an ice chest that is large enough to hold your crawfish.

Wash Your Crawfish

There is a reason they call crawfish mudbugs! You need to put your live crawfish in the ice chest and rinse them with cool, clean water.

Seasonings

Everybody has an opinion on what the right seasonings are and how much you need. It really comes down to personal preference. Find a good boil seasoning, we like Zatarains Pro Boil, but choose what you like. You can even ad lemons, oranges, onions and more to create your perfect flavor.

Extras

Add in corn, potatoes, and sausage links to perfect your boil and create a true Cajun feast!

Tools and Stuff

You will need a large metal or wooden paddle to stir the pot. Don’t forget plenty of newspaper to cover your tables and lots of paper towels and trash bags.

How to Boil

Once the crawfish are washed and the pot is filled with water, add in your seasoning (read package for correct amount). Now it’s time to get the water to a rolling boil.    

Once boiling, add in the crawfish and bring the water back to a boil. When it is back to a boil, leave crawfish in for 3 minutes, then turn off the burner and cool down the water to about 160 degrees F.  This can be done with ice, or if you don’t want to water down you seasoning, put in your frozen corn or even run a water hose with cold water on the outside of the pot.

Let your crawfish soak for about 20 minutes. The longer you let them soak, the more spice and flavor you will get!

If you would like to add sausage and veggies to your boil, but don’t want them to be as spicy, you can boil them first and pull them out. Once the crawfish are done you can mix it all together. 

Drain your pot, dump out your boil onto a table covered with newspaper and chow down!

 

First Time Eating Crawfish? 

Here’s how:

Step 1: Remove the Head. Hold the head in one hand and pinch the body just below the head in the other hand, then gently push in, twist and separate the two.

Step 2: Peel the shell of the tail.

Step 3: Remove the tail meat 

and eat it.

Step 4: Suck the head to get out all the flavorful juice.