Store Live Crawfish
Live crawfish should be kept cool (36-41 deg F) and moist at all times prior to boiling. Never submerge them in water as this can kill them. Never store them in direct sun light.
Your crawfish will arrive cradled inside an insulated container kept cool by gel packs. The gel packs will likely be thawed upon arrival. The crawfish will be bundled inside a mesh sack and cushioned by a burlap cloth. Keep the crawfish in the sack until you are ready to boil. Remove the mesh sack from the container and check to make sure that the crawfish are still alive. Rinse the sack in cool water until the runoff is clear. It is normal for the water to be dirty at first. After rinsing, place the sack into a draining ice chest. Make sure the ice chest drain plug is open and the chest is angled so that water can drain. The insulated shipping container can be used in place of an ice chest. Just poke holes in the lower corners of the container so that the water can drain. Place the burlap cloth on top of the crawfish and place a bag of ice on top of the cloth. Poke several holes in the bag of ice so that the cool melt water will drip over the crawfish. You will need approximately one 8lbs bag of ice for every 15lbs or crawfish held overnight. Keep the ice chest in a cool shady place.
Cook Live Crawfish
(1) Large Boiling pot with strainer insert and lid
(1) Outdoor propane burner/stand sufficient to support the pot
(1) Large stirring paddle or similar
(1) Large Ice Chest
(1-2) Thick rags for handling hot objects
30 lbs Live Crawfish
3 lbs Seafood Boil Seasoning
(10-12) Small Red Potatoes whole
(4) Cloves Garlic halved
(4)Medium Onions halved
(1pack) Fresh Mushrooms whole
(1-2 packs) Frozen Corn on the Cob
SAFETY FIRST. Use caution around open flames, hot equipment/water. A rag or oven mitt should be used to handle the lid, pot, strainer, etcâ€¦ when hot. Make sure to cook in an open outdoor area and keep children and pets clear.
- Rinse crawfish in cool water until the runoff is clear. You do not need to purge them with salt.
- Fill a large pot with strainer insert until it is half full. Place on the propane burner in an open outdoor space. Place the lid on the pot. Turn propane burner on and bring the water to a boil.
- Once the water is boiling add in seasoning, potatoes, garlic, and onions. Keep an eye on the potatoes. Test with a fork or knife. If it slides in easily they are done. Donâ€™t overcook the potatoes, as they will continue to steam in the ice chest.
- Once potatoes are almost done add in mushrooms. Once cooked, lower the flame on the burner, remove the veggies/strainer, and place the veggies in a small clean ice chest.
- Turn the burner back up and add in 1 lb more of seasoning. Squeeze the juice from the lemon halves in to the water and bring the water back to a boil.
- Once the water is back to a rolling boil pour the crawfish directly into the strainer along with the lemon halves and carefully lower the strainer into the pot. Replace the lid.
- Bring the pot back to a rolling boil and let it boil for no more than 2 minutes. It is important to keep an eye on the crawfish and time the boil so that they do not overcook. At 2 minutes shut off the flame and kill the boil by adding in the frozen corn. Let the crawfish soak for a few minutes. As they soak you will notice them start to sink as they fill with juice.
- Test the crawfish every so often. The meat should be firm when cooked but not rubbery (raw). Remove the crawfish/strainer from the pot and pour into a large ice chest. Lightly sprinkle with the remaining seasoning. Mix and let steam for 5 minutes.
- Serve the crawfish and veggies on to trays or dump them on an outdoor table covered with plenty of newspaper and enjoy.
- Separate the tail from the head by twisting them apart.
- Suck the juice from the head. (Optional)
- Remove the first few segments of the shell from the tail (head end) until there is enough meat for you to grasp.
- Holding the meat with one hand, pinch the base of the tail with the other and gently pull apart.
Pick a Crawfish Pot
A good rule to follow is you can cook roughly 1 pound of crawfish for every 2 quarts a pot can hold. Most sacks of crawfish hold 30-40lbs, so a pot size of 60-80 quarts is a good range.