You readers sure love this recipe! We’ve heard so many comments about this easy summer entertaining feast since we published it in our Summer 2015 issue—not only how delicious it is, but how fun it is to eat. We agree: it’s the epitome of relaxed, crowd-pleasing entertaining. Are you making it this weekend? You really should.
Just ignore the name. Really. No frogs are harmed in its making, and it’s not a stew. (Who wants that in summer?) Rather, it’s a feed-a-crowd Happy Meal for all ages that doesn’t—not kidding here—require plates or cutlery. I first tried it in South Carolina’s Low Country (it’s also called “Low-Country Boil”)—a big pot of sausage, corn, shell-on shrimp, chicken, potatoes, and clams was upended onto a newspaper-covered table. We dug in, dipping the bits in melted butter. Afterwards, our hosts just rolled up the newspaper. Cleanup done. In theory, you could cook Frogmore Stew in a stockpot on the stove, turning the cottage into a steam bath. Much better to do it authentically—outdoors. No need for precision with the ingredients either. More kids? Add chicken. Mussels or clams in the market? Use them, and go lighter on the shrimp. (Or not.) Just don’t forget the paper towels. This is fine food—but it ain’t fine dining.
For the pot
- 1-2 bottles beer optional
- ½-1 cup shrimp-and-crab-boil seasoning such as Old Bay or Zatarain’s (adjust amount for more eaters. To feed eight, you’ll need about ½ cup of seasoning. For larger groups, add up to another ½ cup of seasoning.)
For each person
- ¼ lb smoked kielbasa or other smoked sausage cut in chunks (125 g)
- 1 skinless chicken drumstick or thigh
- 3-4 small new potatoes
- 1 ear of corn husked and cut in thirds
- ½ lb shell-on large shrimp 21–25 count (250 g)
- 6-8 clams or mussels optional; if including, reduce quantity of shrimp as desired
- Melted butter for dipping
- Pour enough water and beer (if you’re using it) into a turkey-fryer pot to reach the bottom of the strainer basket. Cover and bring to a boil.
- Layer ingredients in the basket in the following order, sprinkling each layer liberally with seasoning and steaming (with cover on) for the specified time before adding the next layer:• kielbasa, 3–5 minutes• chicken and potatoes, 12–15 minutes• corn, 3–5 minutes• shrimp, 2 minutes• clams or mussels (if using), 5 minutes (If not including optional shellfish, cook shrimp for 4–6 minutes.)
- When shrimp are just opaque and clams or mussels are open, remove strainer basket, allow to drain briefly, and tip contents onto a table covered with several layers of butcher paper or newspaper. Serve with melted butter.
Originally published in the Summer 2015 issue of Cottage Life.