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I have always wanted to host a clam bake at the beach, but with open fire regulations, I have never been able to actually do it. I decided that this year, I would work around that. Last weekend we invited a few friends and enjoyed delicious wine and a bowl of fresh clams, then watched the sunset. It was seriously such an amazing evening of good food and fabulous company.
Beach BBQs don't always have to consist of hamburgers and hot dogs. If you plan correctly, you can have the perfect gourmet meal on the sand. Clams are a great meal to serve as they do not take long to prepare and require little prep work.
About an hour before heading to the beach, I chopped all of the ingredients for my broth and placed them in sandwich bags. I also brought along my handy cast iron pan which I use whenever we are grilling something away from home. It makes the best bacon and eggs on camping trips.
When we got to the beach, I poured myself a nice glass (plastic cup) of Black Box Chardonnay and got cooking. My husband started the fire and I placed my pan on the grill to heat up. Once hot, I made my broth! Every time someone walked by, they had to stop and comment me on how wonderful it smelled. Onions, garlic, and butter always do the trick!
I am a firm believer that clams must be cooked in a wine broth. I reluctantly sacrificed a cup of my Black Box Chardonnay to simmer the clams in. Black Box wine is the perfect on the go wine because you do not have to worry about the glass bottle. Black Box has won over 50 Gold Medals for its quality. Also its price point is 40% less than comparable bottled wines, and it stays fresh for up to 6 weeks....if it lasts that long!
Once the clams were ready, I served everyone a huge bowl with a ton of broth and of course a large piece of bread to soak it up. We ate, drank, and had an amazing evening. After dinner we enjoyed a perfect California beach sunset and lit the bonfire to roast some s'mores. It is nights like these that really make life good!
- 8 tablespoons butter
- 1 medium sized onion , finely diced
- 3 cloves garlic , finely diced
- 1 10 ounce can of diced tomatoes
- 1 cup dry white wine
- 1 cup seafood or vegetable stock
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon pepper
- 2-3 pounds fresh clams
- 1 lemon , sliced into wedges
- chopped parsley and thinly sliced green onions for garnish
- French Bread
Light your grill. Once coals are hot, place cast iron pan on top of the grill to get hot, about 10 minutes.
Once pan is hot, melt butter.
When butter is melted and begins to bubble, add onions and garlic. Sauté until they are soft and translucent, about 5 minutes.
Add tomatoes, wine, stock, and salt and pepper.
Once broth is hot and beginning to simmer, add clams.
Cover pan with foil and cook until all of the clams have opened, stirring occasionally, about 20 minutes.
Lightly grill bread.
When clams are open, squeeze two lime wedges and sprinkle them with chopped parsley and sliced green onions.
Serve immediately with a generous size piece of bread!