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Connecticut Clambakes Cooking Techniques

Sep 6, 2008
With Connecticut clambakes, seafood parties can be great. Besides being the tasty food they are, clambakes can also refer to an outdoors gathering of people entertained by luscious and healthy seafood meals with fresh vegetables. It can be adapted into any formal or informal event - family reunion, corporate meeting, wedding party, or just a romantic dinner for two.

The hands-on eating lends itself to a casual atmosphere which makes it a terrific icebreaker when meeting new people. Plainly put, clambakes are fun! And with summer's approach, it is the perfect moment to get the water boiling.

Traditional clambakes were held at the beach as food was cooked over a steady fire. Nowadays, local laws prohibit beach fires, so clambakes are prepared over a more efficient propane burner, but the traditional atmosphere still exists.

What foods are included in a clambake may vary. Some folks like to serve quahogs (hard shelled clams) just before the main course. Others prefer steamers (soft shelled clams) dipped in butter and salty broth to start. Mussels can be an additional or alternative shellfish and some folks like to get fancy and serve shrimp and clam chowder as well. Accompaniments include potatoes, corn on the cob, salads, slaws and cornbread. For dessert, ice cream is still the best. But whatever the supporting acts, the star of any clambake is the lobster bisque.

Now, if you really want to follow the original clambake cooking process, you'll have to find a spot on the beach where you can dig a pit which is two or three feet deep. Then line it with rocks and build a huge fire on top of these rocks that would reach 400 degrees F. Line the hot rocks with wet seaweed, layer with potatoes, corn in the husk, and more seaweed. Cover the pit with a tarpaulin which is weighted down with rocks, and let it to steam for three hours.

If you want a simpler method, just have the shellfish and accompaniments steamed on a stovetop. You can put rocks in a large metal washtub across a couple of burners on the stovetop and layer it with clams and seaweed. You can then pour in a couple of gallons of seawater until it boils. Steam the clambake for twenty minutes.

But if you think seawater and seaweed are making things complicated, how about having a clambake on your grill over hot coals? This way, it will help boil the live lobster and potatoes first as they take the longest time to cook. The clams and corn will be cooked through the grill's heat.

And if you really want the simplest method of making Connecticut clambakes, put the clams in a pot and add to it chorizo and corn and maybe some aromatics such as shallots and saffron. Just steam it until the clams open. There are indeed many cooking methods to choose from. Whether you opt for the more traditional complicated one, or the much easier pot method, it's all really up to you. Just never forget to have a great time with your family and friends over the lovely Connecticut clambakes.
About the Author
The king of seafood is the lobster dinner, and to ensure you're getting the freshest, order it online. Accompany your wonderful meal with lobster clambake. To order ocean-themed meals please visit Quality Fresh Seafood.
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