Some people add other ingredients, such as andouille sausage, artichokes,
or even other shellfish.
- Equipment: 1 large pot in which to boil 4 quarts of water
- 1 1/2 cups salt
- 2 lemons, sliced
- 1 large onion, sliced
- 3 tablespoons cayenne pepper
- 12 medium red potatoes (about 3 pounds)
- 4 large ears corn, broken in half
- 2 pounds large shrimp, 21-25 per pound count *see note
Add corn to the pot, again bring to a simmer and simmer for 5 minutes.
Add shrimp and bring to a boil. By the time the water reaches a boil, the shrimp should be done--opaque rather than translucent. Don't overcook the shrimp.
Drain all ingredients or lift them out of the pot and transfer to a large serving platter, or place them on the center of a newspaper-covered table. The onion and lemon slices may be removed, but I like to keep them in for flavor and color.
May be served with a sauce: cocktail, remoulade, or just melted butter.
*Shrimp are sold by "count." Standard counts are, per pound:
under 10; 10 to 15; 16 to 20; 21 to 25; 26 to 30; 31 to 35; 36 to 42; 42 to 50; and 50 to 60.
The usual size for shrimp dishes served in restaurants is 16 to 20 per pound; small shrimp are the best size for shrimp salad, shrimp cocktails, stews and gumbos. Use medium shrimp for shrimp boils and deep fried shrimp; large shrimp for broiling, grilling or barbecuing.