The Difference Between Louisiana Crayfish and Lowcountry Boils
Like its Gulf Coast counterpart, the South Carolina Lowcountry boil also occurs seasonally, but usually occurs in the fall. Its origins can be traced to the Gullahs, who are African Americans living in the Lowcountry region, whose varied cultural roots influenced what came into the pot (via Brunswick Forest). African American Charleston explains that Gullah cuisine, which is rooted in West African coastal cuisine, originated in slave dwellings. This is where culinary masterpieces have been prepared in one pot from discarded food.
Charleston Magazine states that the modern Lowcountry Boil, also called Frogmore Stew, continues today. It is attributed to National Guard Robert Gay who adapted a family recipe that would effectively feed 100 of his soldiers. He named his recipe after his hometown of Frogmore, South Carolina. After a surge in popularity, Gourmet magazine featured Gay’s Frogmore Stew on its cover in the 1980s (per Charleston Magazine).
Shrimp are the seafood of choice for a Lowcountry boil. Like a crawfish boil, the Lowcountry recipe also includes potatoes, corn, and sausage. As the South Carolina Aquarium notes, shrimp is a key product of the Palmetto State. The seasoning depends on the boil, with the Lowcountry boil considered milder than its spicier Louisiana cousin (via Lobstergram).
Whatever your craving for shellfish, put them in a pot, grab some friends, cold beers and enjoy the seafood.