The clambake or clam bake, also known as the New England clambake is a traditional method of cooking seafood by steaming the ingredients over layers of seaweed. This traditional New England Clam Boil is made accessible with an easy swap to cooking over an open flame. This hearty and festive summer meal can be scaled to feed one, two, or more than a few!
1poundSmoked Chorizo Sausage or Portuguese Linguica, cut crosswise into 2 inch pieces
Your favorite hot sauce
Old Bay seasoning, optional
Into the bottom of a large 5-gallon pot equipped with a steam rack or the bottom of a large lobster steam pot, add 1 quart of water.
On top of the steamer rack or into the top half of the lobster pot, place cleaned and quartered potatoes, in the bottom of the pot. Next top the potatoes with the ears of corn. Top this with steamer clams.
Next, add fish fillets wrapped in parchment pockets, paper lunch bags, or sealed aluminum foil packets. Add the sausages and hot dogs (if using). Add the lobsters or crabs. Top the whole meal with a large, peeled whole onion nestled into the top layer.
Cover tightly and steam 30 minutes, maintaining water at a full rolling boil.
Check the onion, if it's cooked through and opaque, the clambake is cooked through. If not yet fully cooked, steam an additional 5 to 10 minutes. When done, lobsters and crabs will be completely red. Transfer to a large serving pan or onto a newspaper-lined table and serve immediately.
Andouille or smoked kielbasa sausage can be substituted for the Portuguese sausages if they are not available in your area. You may also substitute cherry stone or other clams and mussels for the soft shell steamer clams if they are not available in your area. If you don't have parchment paper or aluminum foil, we've also used small brown paper lunch bags to steam the fish. However, they can easily break when removing so you have to use extra care for this.
This recipe is easily doubled or tripled to feed a crowd.
Clam Boil FAQs.
How do I store Clams before use? Store fresh clams in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. They will be sold cold and alive.How do I store leftover steamed clams? Leftover cooked clams can be stored in a 40 degree F refrigerator for up to 2 days. Store them in some reserved cooking liquid for best results.Can I freeze whole clams?Yes. Whole fresh clams can be frozen in their shells by simply freezing them in water. We do this by placing them in a zip top bag on a baking tray and then adding water. Zip the top and then lay the bag flat. Clams can be frozen this way for up to 6 months. How Do I reheat leftover clams? Leftover clams are best reheated by first heating some reserved cooking stock and then quickly adding the clams for just a few seconds to reheat them. Overheating them will cause them to turn rubbery.How can I repurpose leftover clams? Leftover clams are best in clam chowder, clam cakes, or stuffed clams.