New England Steamed Clams

There is probably no more iconic summer dish for me than steamers; it’s what my family made for most summer holidays, and I could never get enough of them.  And now as an adult, you can’t go wrong.  It’s easy, it’s relatively healthy (you don’t need THAT much butter) and you it’s even better if you eat it outside.  It is hard to find long neck, softshell clams in the DC neck of the woods, so we have to improvise.  But it’s STILL good even with littlenecks.  And if you happen upon a place to get long necks in DC?  Please let me know! 😉  We’ll make do in the meantime. 😉




  • 4 dozen clams (that was for two people)
  • water
  • butter, melted
  • chopped parsley

One hour before serving, scrub clams in cold water; rinse with water until free of sand. Let soak in cold water and a pinch of flour for an hour+.

Place clams in steamer or on rack in large kettle with 1 cup boiling water (or enough to cover bottom). Cover kettle with tight-fitting lid and steam over low heat just until clams open, about 5 to 10 minutes. Meanwhile, melt butter to taste (we did about 2 tablespoons per person – you don’t use it all, but it makes dunking easier).
Serve steamed clams in soup bowls with individual cups of butter. Pour broth into mugs and sprinkle with a little chopped parsley. Dunk clams first in broth, then in butter.





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