I love all seafood, but I love shellfish the most. Whether it’s oysters on the half shell, king crab legs, whole Maine lobster or good seafood chowder. But nothing says Fall like a big pot of steamed mussels and clams. Some people say that eating shellfish is way too much work or that clams and mussels are too chewy — I say fine, more for me.

When my parents would visit me in Arizona, their favorite place to go was The Fish Market restaurant. My go-to lunch at The Fish Market was called Ducket’s Bucket, an assortment of steamed clams and mussels brought to the table in a large saucepan. My mom would taste the broth and claimed that it tasted like somebody had soaked their dirty socks in it. She wasn’t entirely wrong.

Once I realized how easy they were to steam, I started making clams and mussels at home. The first time I made them I didn’t have any wine at the house, so I substituted beer. Lo and behold the sauce no longer tasted like feet, as it was the wine that was creating the acetic taste in the broth at the Fish Market. I added a couple more non-traditional ingredients to the mix and friends would invite themselves over for the broth at the end as much as the mussels and clams.

Steamed mussels and clams

Mussels and Clams

  • Prep Time: 15m
  • Cook Time: 10m
  • Total Time: 25m
  • Serves: 4

What's in it:

  • 2 lb of mussels, cleaned
  • 2 lb of clam, cleaned
  • 12 oz beer
  • 2 tbsp. powered chicken stock
  • 1 c parsley, chopped
  • ½ cup cilantro, chopped
  • 4 large cloves garlic, sliced
  • 4 c water
  • 4 tbsp. butter

How to make it:

  1. Combine water, beer, powdered stock, garlic, butter and half of the parsley in a large stock pot with a lid and bring to a strong boil. Toss in clams and close lid for 7-10 minutes until clams have given up the fight and most are opened. Add the mussels, recover and reduce heat to low. Keep covered for 3-5 minutes and then check for any unopened mussels. Sprinkle remaining parsley over shellfish and serve family-style or in individual bowls with French or sourdough bread for dipping in the broth.