Twice while in Seattle in 2005 and 2007, we went to Crab Pot at the pier and ate SeaFest for Two or More! The menu copy is so effective - "Our specialty. We take a variety of fresh seafood, steamed with mouthwatering spices, we pour it out on the table on butcher paper, give you a mallet, bibs and let you go at it!"
Frankly, the taste was okay but it was more of the novel experience that I liked. Good to experience it once (or twice) only since it costs major dollar$ at $24 per person for the mid-option (with crabs).
Anyhow, I always wondered how they cooked it - it's supposed to be "steamed with mouthwatering spices". But steaming takes a very long time...so do they really steam it?
Well, I now know the secret! But before I reveal it, let me tell you about our July 4 long weekend where and when I "discovered" this secret! We went to Dallas for a mini-reunion cum despedida.
The mini-reunion was with Li and Tin, 2 of my high-schoolmates from eons ago. Yeah, we're old... but age is in the mind and heart, not the face :) We agree in chorus - "40 is the new 30" :) The last time we probably got together was in 2000 back in the Philippines. With the internet though, we "saw" the children grow up and "knew" what was up with one another on a, more or less, real-time basis - I imagine much more than if we did not have the technology! Nothing replaces getting together face-to-face though - even if we did not have karaoke this time :)
The despedida was for Tito Ben and Tita Andrea, Li's parents who were here on a visit. They are our wedding "godparents". Anyway, they said that returning to the Philippines feels bittersweet. Sweet because they are going home, yet "bitter" because they will be missing their grandchildren. Not sure when they will be back to visit here in the US. We hope to visit them in Kidapawan in the future though.
Photos are available here: Mine, Tin, Li
Anyway, going back to the SECRET!!! (Actually, Li still owes me the recipe. Hehehe...) But, let me try to recall it:
- Basic Ingredients:
- tiger prawns
- baby carrots
- red potatoes
- Magic Ingredient: Crawfish, Crab and Shrimp Boil spice. (I really do not remember the brand. I went to the grocery and got me Zatarain's but I know what we used was a different brand. Warning - 213% sodium!!!)
- Instructions: BOIL!!! (It is not steamed!)
There are more details to that but let's leave this here for now. I will write the blow-by-blow instructions once I have actually done it successfully myself or whenever Li sends me the recipe, whichever comes first.