What’s Cooking: Fried Clams

A delicious fresh seafood dinner on the beautiful coast of Maine sounds pretty good, right? Check out this what’s cooking to see how Bob’s Clam Hut in Kittery makes fried clams.

Ingredients:

  • A blend of white flour and corn flour
  • Canola or peanut oil
  • 8 oz select “Specials” frying clams — “Select” means they are a consistent size. This is critical because clams of different sizes demand different cooking times and you’ll be frying these in one batch. “Specials” indicates the size of the select is a desirable one – about the size of a nickel. Not too small (no flavor) or too large (belly overwhelms the experience, but some hard core folks love big bellies).

Instructions:

  1. Heat oil to 350 degrees.
  2. Drop clams directly into the flour and gently coat. Carefully move a finger inside each neck ring to ensure it is fully coated.
  3. Place clams in pasta basket and gently shake off excess flour. Place clams in fryer basket and drop directly into the oil. Cook for 2 – 3 minutes.
  4. Do not shake baskets while cooking and try not to pull clams out of the oil until done.
  5. Look for two colors – a darker and lighter brown appearing on the clam neck. When oil sizzle starts to cease, the clams are done. Pull immediately and gently pour onto paper towel to absorb excess oil.
  6. Mix a tartar sauce using Hellman’s mayo, sweet or dill relish, capers or a favorite hot sauce. Squeeze a little lemon on the clams and indulge!
  • Note: for a crunchier, puffier coating, dip clams in milk before dredging in flour. At Bob’s Clam Hut, this is known as the “Lillian” style clams, named after beloved longtime employee Lillian Mangos who insisted her method was better than owner Bob’s Kraft’s take on the dish!

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