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More Outdoor Cooking (w/Tools)


fm2176

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Hopefully the title isn't too misleading...I didn't use any tools in the preparation of food yesterday, but they sure helped out.  My family and I had been planning a shrimp boil for the past few months, and yesterday was the day.  A friend arrived at 6am with a truck load of wood and he and his wife helped with the final preparations.  My DeWalt 20v max chainsaw is buried somewhere and the gas Ryobi is at the other house, so he broke down the wood with a Fuel Sawzall while I pressure washed the pollen off everything.  

 

After a morning beer run that saw us come home with a case of Coors Light along with the last 10 Bud Light Cheladas and last four boxes of Pabst Blue Ribbon hard coffee, the cooking commenced.  First up, 16 pounds of chicken wings smoked over apple wood.  While those were going, I used a Jawhorse to clamp one of my cooking pots while I cleaned it (I have a tendency to keep them outside and to not thoroughly clean them after use, so they get nasty).  No problem, a little degreaser and the pressure washer had it looking like new.

 

Before the bulk of guests showed up, we made our musical selections.  FM radio on the Score speakers inside for those playing pool, and SiriusXM Ozzy's Boneyard on a ToughSystem radio outside.  I also set mounted two of the Ridgid fans to a tripod, placed the Air Cannon on the patio, and set up the Arctic Cove misting fan near the cooking area.  Once people started arriving, the newly commissioned mini-bar came into play, with frozen drinks of every variety being made.  I came up with a twist while making pina coladas, adding a couple moonshine cherries to the blender.  Maybe the Cheladas and beer warped my taste buds, but the resulting drink reminded me of pineapple upside down cake.

 

The pot of water went on the burner soon after with a jar of Zatarain's crab boil seasoning.  Once it started boiling, potatoes, corn, and mushrooms were added.  About 20 minutes in, fresh andouille went in.  The little 30-qt. pot was filled to the brim, so I pulled the basket out and added the shrimp for a few minutes.  Some people were already raiding the other stuff before I could even put the shrimp on the table, but once the shrimp went out everyone had plates in hand.

 

As a final touch, I put two dozen crabs in the pot for a few minutes.  I had asked my wife to pick up live crabs (her face was priceless) so I could either steam or boil them.  For better or worse, she came home with unseasoned steamed crabs a couple of hours before the boil even started, making it necessary to refrigerate them for food safety.  My family pounced on the crabs and before I knew it they were down to the final few.  

 

Anyway, I love cooking outdoors for groups of people and would count yesterday as being as successful as Thanksgiving was.  As usual, I grossly overestimated the amount of food to buy and now have 24 pounds of shrimp and a couple pounds of andouille in the freezer, a bit of uncooked sliced andouille that may become breakfast, and plenty of potatoes and corn to incorporate into dinner over the next week.  I also have a back porch stocked with soft drinks and a near-untouched case of Coors Light to work on today.  My friend that showed up early made a late-day beer run, then disappeared shortly afterward without saying anything.  Guess I'll be cleaning the back porch and patio by myself today...  :) 

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  • 1 month later...

And there is nothing better for outdoor cooking than something special like artisan bread, with unique smells and healthy, tasty additives. I truly love to order German bread from Edelweiss store, because it's maybe the only store in Fort Lauderdale, that can offer tasty european bread with all the options about it. You should try their goods, I'm telling you.

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