South Carolina Shrimp Boil
The one-pot appeal of this shrimp boil is often its downfall.
Why This Recipe Works
South Carolina Shrimp Boil is inspired by Frogmore stew, a South Carolina shrimp boil made by simmering local shell-on shrimp, smoked sausage, corn on the cob, and potatoes in a broth seasoned with Old Bay. We wanted perfectly cooked meat, seafood, and vegetables flavored by Old Bay, but not overwhelmed by it. We began by browning the smoky, spicy andouille sausage to render fat and boost flavor. We replaced some of the cooking liquid (water in this case) with clam juice, which reinforced the taste of the sea and amped up the flavor. We used only enough liquid to barely cover the ingredients. You don’t eat the broth in this boil, but if it has no flavor, the stuff you do eat won’t either. This amount of liquid concentrated the flavors so they weren’t overpowering but also weren’t watered down. We staggered the ingredients’ cooking times, starting with the potatoes and corn first until the potatoes were almost tender, then adding the sausage and shrimp. This ensured intact potatoes, plump corn, and nicely cooked sausage and shrimp.