For this shrimp boil, use headless shrimp but leave the shells on. (If the heads are still on add another one pound to the weight.) Have finger bowls ready with fresh lemon and lots of napkins. It is messy, but great for warmer weather dinners on the patio.
For the boiled shrimp:
• 4 medium artichokes
• 8 new potatoes
• 8 pearl onions
• 3 lemons
• 2 pounds large gulf shrimp
• 4 ears of yellow corn
For the spice mixture:
• ¼ cup kosher salt
• 3 tablespoons pickling spice
• 6 bay leaves
• 3 tablespoons crushed red pepper
• 1 tablespoons black pepper
In large pot bring water to a boil. Cook the new potatoes for 10 minutes and remove.
Cut the top of artichokes blunt, then cut off the stems. With scissors, snip off the tips of each leaf. In the same boiling water as the potatoes, cook the artichokes until a leaf pulls off easily or a fork goes through the bottom easily. Remove from water and cool. With a teaspoon, scoop out the prickly center until you get to the bottom. Clean until the smooth artichoke bottom is surrounded by larger size leaves.
In large pot put five to six quarts of water. Peel pearl onions, and cut lemons in half and add to water. Add salt, pickling spice, bay leaves, crushed red pepper, and black pepper. Bring to a boil for 10 minutes.
Add fresh corn and new potatoes and cook for another five to seven minutes. Add shrimp and cleaned artichokes, cook for two minutes and turn off heat. Let sit for 15 minutes.
Drain off excess water and serve on a large platter or tray, served with cocktail sauce and remoulade.
To read Regina Charboneau's post about her love of shrimp and artichokes—and her thankfulness for spring—click here.