Jump to content
  • Welcome to the eG Forums, a service of the eGullet Society for Culinary Arts & Letters. The Society is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of the culinary arts. These advertising-free forums are provided free of charge through donations from Society members. Anyone may read the forums, but to post you must create a free account.

Living Large


HungryChris
 Share

Recommended Posts

We drove up to Ipswich Mass yesterday and went to the Clam Box. We used to go to Woodman's in Essex, but were told by a local "That's just for tourists, go to the Clam Box." It was a beautiful day and the drive went by quickly. When we arrived there was a line of about twenty people out the door, a good sign. Fried clams, here we come! There are picnic tables outside, but the shade trees were shedding flowers in the light breeze, so we opted for a table inside, which opened up for us on que.

We have found that fried foods tend to fill us up pretty quickly, so we have to just stick with the basics, fried clams! No onion rings or french fries for us, just give us fried clams, please. We ordered a large "box" of them. They were the best! They were not too big, nicely breaded, tender and sweet. We were hooked! Someone in line ahead of us ordered a "box" of fried oysters, not on the menu, but one of my favorite things to eat. Immediately our next trip there was taking shape and fried oysters would play a roll.

I have been looking for soft shell crabs without much luck lately and on a whim decided to take a look in Whole Foods on the way home in Framingham. Bingo!

They were already cleaned which would normally put me off, but I have had such good luck there, I forged ahead and bought 3 "whales", popped them in the cooler and spent a little while in Trader Joe's next door. Between us we bought about six bottles of wine, some cheese, greek yogurt and a few other items.

I didn't get home until about 8:00 PM and was hungry again....You guessed it!

Soft shell crab, baby! I put together a batch of seasoned flour and pan sauted one of those bad boys in a combination of butter and olive oil. One word...Fantastic, OK two words..Fantastickly good! I wasn't crazy about buying "whales" and would have preferred "Hotel" or "Medium" size because I was concerned about getting them crisp and done at the same time and thought the bigger ones might be a problem. Well, not an issue.

As I went to sleep last night I was thinking about two things. Fried oysters at the Clam Box and the two soft shell crabs in my freezer. Life is good. Some days are larger than others. Yesterday was a whale!

Cheers,

HC

Edited to say: I forgot to mention that on the way to MA we stopped at Plainfield Dogtrack and each put ten bucks on the Kentucky Durby. We tried to listen to the race on the radio, but couldn't find coverage. When we got home we saw that the $4 bet on Smarty Jones paid off along with one of the place bets. What a country!!

Edited by HungryChris (log)
Link to comment
Share on other sites

:blink: damnnnnnn life is great! im dying for some clams now! hmmmmmm,,,daddy's in niantic maybe... great derby too! excellant story on smarty jones and the owner too. what a countryyyyy! :laugh:
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Love the clams at the Clam Box, but I always opt for the "big bellies" if the sign is out...

If it's for more than clams, I go down the road to Essex Seafood, where the lobsters are about 1/2 the price of Woodmans's (yeah, it *is* just for tourists....), the steamers are sweert, and the fried clams are second only to the Clam Box, it makes it more convenient for a mixed-seafood experience...And, it's BYOB...Also the best lobster roll; make sure you ask them to grill the roll.

My favorite place for soft-shells, in season, is Peach Farm Seafood, in Boston's Chinatown...get them spicy salt-fried...they're not whole, but they're fabulous...

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I LOVE the Clam Box in Ipswich, used to live in Newburyport and would regularly go down to Ipswich and also Essex for great shellfish. For lobsters, we would dive off of my friend's 50' Hatteras......love New England summers!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

BIG bellies......GOOD

OYSTERS fried......GOOD

Y U M M Y

:smile::smile::smile::smile::smile::smile::smile:

DITTO!

YUMMMMM!

It must be that certain scent in the air that smells of the ocean and flairs the nostrals and tells us summer's coming and so is all that great seafood!

Soft shells....spider rolls!

or with no flour, sauteed in butter, garlic, shallots, white wine.....my mom and I used to get them in the 1980's in New Haven for $.50 each!!!! at the Whalley Ave. Food Coop (long closed). I don't think they knew what they were! And monkfish was cheaper than cod, like $.99 lb!

JANE

Link to comment
Share on other sites

We made a trip up to Ipswich yesterday, and we stopped at the Clam Box for a "snack." We got a box of fried native clams and a box of scallops. I have to say I was disappointed. Although the clams were small and tender, they didn't have a lot of flavor. I guess I'm willing to chew a bit more for stronger clam flavor. My friend agreed, saying that the breading was all she tasted. Perhaps the big bellied clams have more flavor? The scallops, however, were very sweet and flavorful.

Diana Burrell, freelance writer/author

The Renegade Writer's Query Letters That Rock (Marion Street Press, Nov. 2006)

DianaCooks.com

My eGullet blog

The Renegade Writer Blog

Link to comment
Share on other sites

ninetofive wrote [on ,May 3 2004, 05:27 PM]

We made a trip up to Ipswich yesterday, and we stopped at the Clam Box for a "snack." We got a box of fried native clams and a box of scallops. I have to say I was disappointed. Although the clams were small and tender, they didn't have a lot of flavor. I guess I'm willing to chew a bit more for stronger clam flavor. My friend agreed, saying that the breading was all she tasted. Perhaps the big bellied clams have more flavor?

I have to admit that in a perfect world, I would have liked the clams to be a bit larger than they were so there would have been more clam to breading ratio. That is also a matter of personal preference. I remember going to Woodmans and seeing a hand printed sign that said "The clams are running large today." We looked at one another and said "What do you suppose that means?'.

When we got them, that question was answered. There were a few that had bellies the size of golf balls. You just don't want them so big you gotta cut those bellies to eat them because that just takes all measure of the romance of fried clams out of the picture, for me, at least. That being said, the Clam Box clams were still damned good. They are one of the things that speaks of New England summer to me and I'm ready for it!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...