How to Cook Frozen Clams in Shell: A Step-by-Step Guide

Clams in shell are a tasty treat that can be cooked quickly and easily using frozen clams. This step-by-step guide will show you how to prepare, cook, and serve these delicious morsels. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced home cook, this guide will set you up for success.

What You’ll Need

To cook frozen clams in their shells, you’ll need a few simple items: a large pot with a lid that fits snuggly over the pot, 3 quarts of water, and approximately 2 pounds of fresh or frozen clams. You’ll also need a slotted spoon, a colander, and a large bowl of cold water. Optional ingredients to enhance the flavor include 1 teaspoon of salt and 1 tablespoon of white wine or lemon juice.

To begin, bring the 3 quarts of water to a boil in the large pot. Once boiling, add the clams and cover the pot with the lid. Allow the clams to cook for 8-10 minutes, or until the shells have opened. Remove the pot from the heat and use the slotted spoon to transfer the clams to the colander. Rinse the clams with cold water and transfer them to the bowl of cold water. This will stop the cooking process and help to preserve the flavor. Serve the clams with the optional ingredients, or with your favorite dipping sauce.

Prepping the Frozen Clams

Before beginning to cook the clams, it is important to prepare them first. Rinse the clams in a large bowl of cold water and place them in a colander to drain. Discard any broken or partially opened clams. To remove any remaining dirt and sand, sprinkle the clams with cornmeal and gently shake the colander for 20 seconds. Rinse again in cold water one more time before cooking.

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It is important to note that frozen clams should be thawed before prepping. To thaw, place the clams in a bowl of cold water and let sit for 30 minutes. Once thawed, follow the same steps as above to prepare the clams for cooking.

Cooking the Frozen Clams in Shell

Fill the pot with 3 quarts of cold water and bring it to a boil on the stovetop over high heat. Add the clams, salt and white wine (or lemon juice) to the pot. Reduce the heat to low, cover the pot with the lid, and heat until all of the clams are opened – this should take between 8-10 minutes. To check if they’re done, gently poke one or two of the clams with a fork – if it’s cooked through, it should open up easily. Discard any clams that don’t open.

Once the clams are cooked, remove them from the pot and place them in a bowl. Serve the clams with melted butter, lemon wedges, and freshly chopped parsley. Enjoy!

Finishing Touches

Once all the clams are cooked, use a slotted spoon to transfer them to a bowl or serving dish. Discard the remaining liquid in the pot. The clams can now be enjoyed as is, or topped with melted butter or your favorite seasoning.

For an extra special touch, try adding a squeeze of fresh lemon juice or a sprinkle of chopped parsley. You can also serve the clams with a side of crusty bread to soak up all the delicious juices. Enjoy!

Serving Suggestions

Frozen clams in shell are delicious when served as a snack, appetizer, or side dish. Try topping them with garlic butter or your favorite herb blend for extra flavor. They’re also great when served over pasta, rice, or potatoes for a more filling meal.

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For a unique twist, try baking the clams in the oven with a sprinkle of Parmesan cheese. You can also add them to a seafood chowder or bisque for a comforting and flavorful meal.

Tips for Optimal Results

When cooking frozen clams in their shells, it is important to begin with fresh clams. Any clams that are broken or partially opened should be discarded before cooking to ensure that they’re safe to eat. If you’re working with frozen clams, it is important to let them thaw completely before preparing and cooking them. To ensure that all of the clams cook evenly and open up completely, adjust the heat on your burner so that the water simmers rather than boils.

Troubleshooting Common Problems

If your clams aren’t cooking through properly and don’t open after 8-10 minutes of cooking, increase the heat on your burner slightly to bring the liquid back to a simmer. If some of the clams are cooked through but others remain stubbornly closed, discard any unopened clams and return the cooked clams to low heat for an additional few minutes until all of them open.

Related Recipes

Delicious recipes that feature frozen clams in their shells include clam chowder, spicy steamed clams, linguine with white clam sauce, and fried clams. Of course, there are many other variations out there – be sure to explore your options!

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