4th of July Recipe: Chef Nick’s Summer Seafood Boil
4 ears fresh yellow corn, cut crosswise into 3-inch pieces
6 quarts water
4 large lemons, halved crosswise
2 large yellow onions, halved lengthwise
3 medium jalapeño chiles, halved lengthwise and unseeded (optional)
½ cup Cajun seasoning
1 tablespoon kosher salt
2 ½ teaspoons cayenne pepper (or to taste)
2 large garlic heads, halved crosswise
4 fresh or dried bay leaves
2 pounds baby Yukon Gold potatoes, halved
2 lobster tail cleaned
1 pound andouille sausage, cut into 2-inch pieces
6 frozen snow or king crab legs (about 2 pounds total), thawed
2 pounds jumbo unpeeled, deveined raw shrimp, tail-on
Step 1 – Place corn in a single layer on a large plate; freeze until ready to use, about 1 hour.
Step 2 – Meanwhile, add water to a large (16-quart) stockpot. Squeeze juice from lemon halves into water, removing and discarding seeds; add squeezed lemon halves, onions, jalapeños (if using), Old Bay, salt, cayenne, garlic heads, and bay leaves. Cover and bring to a boil over high heat. Add potatoes. Cover pot and return to a gentle boil over high heat. Uncover, and boil, undisturbed, for 15 minutes. Add sausage. Cover pot and return to a gentle boil over high heat. Uncover, and boil, undisturbed, for 5 minutes. Remove from heat.
Step 3 – Add crab legs, shrimp, lobster tail and frozen corn to stockpot, using tongs to incorporate them into the broth. Cover pot and let mixture stand, undisturbed, 15 minutes.
Step 4 – Working in batches, drain the seafood boil in a colander, using tongs to help transfer ingredients to the colander and then to a serving platter.