Southern Seafood Dishes

Carolina Seafood Muddle is a traditional dish that originated in the coastal region of North Carolina, specifically in the Outer Banks area. It is a hearty and flavorful seafood stew that showcases the abundance of fresh seafood found in the region.

The history of Carolina Seafood Muddle dates back to the early settlers of the Outer Banks, who relied heavily on seafood as a staple food source. They would gather various types of seafood, such as fish, shrimp, clams and crab, along with vegetables and spices, to create a delicious and satisfying stew.

In terms of location, Carolina Seafood Muddle is most commonly associated with the Outer Banks area of North Carolina. The Outer Banks is a long and narrow chain of barrier islands that stretches along the coast of North Carolina. Its proximity to the Atlantic Ocean provides abundant access to fresh seafood, making it an ideal location for this seafood-centric dish.

The ingredients of Carolina Seafood Muddle typically include a combination of seafood, such as fish fillets, shrimp, clams, crabmeat and mussels. Additionally, vegetables like onions, garlic, celery, and bell peppers are often used to add flavor and texture to the stew. Various herbs and spices, such as thyme, bay leaves, paprika and Old Bay seasoning, are added to enhance the overall taste. The stew is typically cooked in a flavorful broth, often made with a combination of seafood stock, tomatoes and white wine.

Carolina Seafood Muddle is a beloved dish in the Outer Banks region and is often enjoyed as a comforting and satisfying meal, especially during the cooler months when fresh seafood is abundant.

Gullah Fried Squid is a dish that originates from the Gullah-Geechee culture, which is a unique African-American culture found in the coastal areas of North and South Carolina and Georgia. The Gullah people are descendants of enslaved Africans who worked on the rice plantations in the region during the colonial era. The Gullah community has a rich culinary tradition that combines African, European and Native American influences.

One of the defining characteristics of Gullah fried squid is the method of preparation. The squid rings are marinated in buttermilk and coated in a mixture of seasoned cornmeal and flour before being fried to perfection. This combination of cornmeal and flour gives the squid a crispy texture and adds an earthy flavor to the dish.

To enhance the flavor, the fried squid is seasoned with a blend of aromatic herbs and spices. These seasonings often include paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, salt, black pepper, cayenne pepper, dried thyme and dried oregano. The combination of these ingredients creates an original flavor profile that is characteristic of Gullah cuisine.

Fried squid is just one of the many delicious dishes that showcase their culinary heritage, which has gained popularity not only within the Gullah community but also among seafood lovers in general. Its crunchy texture makes it a favorite dish in coastal areas and seafood restaurants.

In the South, marinated and pickled seafood dishes are appreciated for their bold flavors and use of fresh ingredients.

Some popular examples include pickled shrimp, where shrimp are marinated in a tangy mixture of vinegar, lemon juice, onions, garlic and spices. Pickled oysters are another favorite, with oysters marinated in a blend of vinegar, spices and sometimes hot sauce or Worcestershire sauce. Pickled crab, marinated clams and marinated mussels are also common, each with their unique combinations of marinades. These seafood dishes are often served as appetizers or as part of a seafood platter, accompanied by sauces or dips like cocktail sauce, lemon sauce or tartar sauce. They’re garnished with fresh herbs, lemon wedges or sliced onions, adding both visual appeal and additional flavor.

Overall, marinated and pickled seafood in the South offer a dynamic combination of tangy, savory and briny flavors that highlight the region’s culinary traditions and love for seafood.

Lobster Jambalaya is a spicy African-American seafood dish of lobster cooked in a spicy tomato-based sauce.

Jambalaya is known for its fiery and bold flavors, from its red chilis and cayenne. The lobster is often served over the dish of rice with chunks of lobster and optional Tasso ham or Andouille sausage and garnished with fresh herbs. It is a popular and indulgent dish for seafood lovers.

Clams and Rice features plump and succulent clams cooked in a flavorful broth infused with white wine, lemon juice, clam liquor, garlic, butter and fresh parsley.

The combination of these ingredients creates a harmonious balance of flavors, with the sweetness of the clams complemented by the zest of the lemon and the aromatic notes of the parsley.

The fluffy rice serves as the perfect vehicle, soaking up the rich broth and bringing all the flavors together.

Clams and Rice showcases our love for seafood and the art of combining simple, fresh ingredients to create a refreshing dining experience.

Shrimp Creole is a popular dish that is commonly associated with the cuisine of Louisiana. However, it has also gained popularity in the neighboring states of North Carolina and South Carolina, particularly in coastal areas where fresh seafood is abundant.

In North Carolina and South Carolina, Shrimp Creole is often prepared with a local twist, incorporating regional ingredients and flavors. While the dish shares similarities with the traditional Louisiana version, there are slight variations that make it unique to the Carolinas.

The key ingredients in Shrimp Creole include shrimp, tomatoes, onions, bell peppers, celery, garlic and a variety of herbs and spices. The dish starts by sautéing the onions, bell peppers and celery in a pot until they become tender. Then, garlic is added to enhance the flavor. Next, tomatoes are added along with a combination of spices such as paprika, cayenne pepper, thyme and bay leaves. The mixture is simmered to allow the flavors to meld together. Finally, the shrimp is added and cooked until they turn pink and are fully cooked.

In North Carolina and South Carolina, variations of Shrimp Creole may incorporate local ingredients such as Carolina Gold rice, a type of heirloom rice that is grown in the region. The dish is often served over a bed of this flavorful rice, which adds a unique texture and taste to the overall dish.

The popularity of Shrimp Creole in North Carolina and South Carolina can be attributed to the abundance of fresh shrimp and other seafood found in the coastal areas. The dish is often enjoyed during gatherings, seafood festivals and family meals. Its rich and flavorful combination of ingredients, along with the spicy kick from the seasonings, makes it a favorite among seafood lovers in the Carolinas.

Crab Rice is a traditional dish that originated in the Gullah culture of the coastal regions of South Carolina and Georgia in the United States. This flavorful one-pot rice dish is often made with fresh crabs and is also made with clams.

Crackling Red Snapper boasts a shattering shell enrobing the most succulent, buttery flesh.

It’s the contrast in textures that makes this slow-smoked dish something to savor.

Clams Casino is a popular dish in the Carolinas, particularly in coastal regions where fresh seafood is abundant. It is a classic appetizer that originated in Rhode Island but has made its way down to the Carolinas.

Clams Casino is typically made by stuffing fresh clams with a mixture of breadcrumbs, bacon, peppers, onions, and various seasonings. The clams are then baked until they are cooked through and the filling is crispy and golden brown.

In the Carolinas, you can find variations of Clams Casino that incorporate local ingredients and flavors. For example, some recipes may use Carolina-style barbecue sauce or incorporate regional spices like Old Bay seasoning.

Clams Casino is often served as an appetizer at seafood restaurants or as a special dish during seafood festivals and events. It is a flavorful and savory dish that showcases the delicious taste of fresh clams and the unique flavors of the Carolinas.

Red Pepper Red Snapper features a tender red snapper fillet and a roasted red pepper and cayenne wild honey sauce. The fillet is seared, while the chili sauce is a lively bed of sweetness, spiciness and smoky notes.