I love party food. I just can’t emphasize that enough. If you have a great group of people getting together, even people who might not know each other too well, then considering a group party food idea is really the way to go. It’s about good food, yes - but more importantly it’s about the food bringing people together, talking, laughing, story telling. Engaging. We’ve done group pizza nights, fish packet nights, brew beer nights, taco & nacho bars, and most recently a seafood boil. We’re shy of an ocean view by about 1,000 miles so clam digging isn’t exactly going to be part of the boil, but we can easily find delicious and suitable substitutions.
Dan & Carol were out to see us in early March. The snow had barely melted but the weather was gorgeous that weekend so we planned a seafood boil. Beer and relaxing must be had while waiting for the water to boil.
We had the usual cast of characters as far as veggies go - potato, corn and onion. We could have done a cajun flair by using crawfish and andouille sausage - but those are a little harder to find in my area. We went with a kielbasa, jumbo sized shrimp and king crab legs.
We have a large portable propane burner with tank and a super huge pot which helps. Fill it with water and add seasonings, toss in the potatoes & onion, then the corn & sausage, then the shrimp & crab….and a few beers later - it’s ready!! Dump it out on a large table lined with paper and literally dig in. You’ll want some freshly sliced lemons and clarified butter nearby…and LOTS of napkins.
Chris snapped a few pics although I really didn’t plan for it. I regret that we didn’t get a shot of the table showing everything combined, but once the food came out I sort of forgot about the camera and wanted to sit, relax and start crackin’.
It was delicious. Dan said it was a meal to remember - he kept texting me for days saying how much he loved it. Haha! That makes me happy. They did the same thing for a party at their house a few weeks ago to celebrate the end of summer. Love that!! Here’s David who has the honor of pouring everything out onto the counter.
So next time you’re having folks over and would like a more lively scene with people moving around, talking, consider some type of party food. As nice as it is to have a casserole ready to pull out of the oven and everything ready in advance - it can also be wonderful to have everyone taking part, stepping over one another, making a huge mess..and most importantly - interacting. That makes memories.
The recipe we like doesn’t really have measurements but this is what we add to the water which makes a flavorful boiling liquid.
At least 2 lemons halved, a few onion halved, several cloves of garlic, a few bay leaves, at least one bag of Old Bay spices, and several generous dashes of tobacco sauce.