Clam cakes are a delicious, savory treat that hails from the Northeastern United States.
These fried pockets of dough are stuffed with chopped clams and spices, making them an irresistible snack or appetizer.
Whether you’re looking for a quick bite while at the beach or something to serve up at your next party, clam cakes are sure to be a hit! Read on to learn more about this delicious treat.
Introduction of Clam Cakes
Clam cakes are a type of savory fritter that originated in the Northeastern United States.
The traditional clam cake is made from a dough that is mixed with chopped clams and spices, such as garlic, pepper, and Old Bay Seasoning.
The dough is then deep-fried, creating a crispy and golden outside with a soft and flavorful inside. Clam cakes are typically served with a side of tartar sauce or cocktail sauce for dipping.
History of clam cakes
The origins of clam cakes can be traced back to the 1700s in New England.
Fishermen would fry up their catch of clams in a pancake-like dough that served as a perfect way to enjoy the seafood. The popularity of clam cakes grew over time and they eventually spread across the Northeastern United States, becoming especially popular in Rhode Island and Connecticut.
Making clam cakes
List of ingredients
In order to make delicious clam cakes, you will need the following ingredients:
1 pound of chopped clams (preferably fresh)
½ cup of all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons of Old Bay Seasoning
¼ teaspoon of garlic powder
¼ teaspoon of black pepper
1 large egg
1 cup of water
Easy to make clam cakes
- To make clam cakes, begin by combining the clams, flour, Old Bay seasoning, garlic powder, and black pepper in a medium-sized bowl.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together the egg and water until combined.
- Add this mixture to the dry ingredients and stir until everything is well incorporated.
Serving clam cakes
Best ways to serve clam cakes
Clam cakes make a delicious snack or appetizer that can be enjoyed year-round.
The best way to serve clam cakes is with a side of tartar sauce or cocktail sauce for dipping. Additionally, they can be served as an entrée with a side of buttery mashed potatoes or rice.
For an extra special treat, try serving the clam cakes with a topping of melted butter and lemon juice.
Recommended side dishes
Clam cakes pair perfectly with a variety of side dishes.
For a classic pairing, serve the clam cakes up with a side of tartar sauce or cocktail sauce for dipping. They can be served with buttery mashed potatoes or rice.
For an extra special treat, try serving the clam cakes with lemon wedges and melted butter. Other great sides include a salad or coleslaw, French fries, and steamed vegetables.
Variations of clam cakes
Different types of clams used in clam cakes
Different types of clams used in clam cakes vary depending on region and preference.
In New England, the traditional clam cake is made with chopped quahogs or hard-shell clams.
Other popular types of clams used in clam cakes include littlenecks, cherrystones, and soft-shells. Soft-shell clams are especially prized for their delicate texture and flavor.
For those looking for a creative twist on the classic clam cake, there are several alternative ingredients that can be used in place of clams.
For example, try making shrimp cakes with chopped shrimp instead of clams. Additionally, canned crab meat, scallops, and lobster make delicious alternatives to traditional clam cakes.
Vegetarians can also enjoy clam cakes by substituting the clams with chopped mushrooms or artichoke hearts.
Popular places to eat clam cakes
Top restaurants that serve clam cakes in the US
In the United States, clam cakes can be found at numerous restaurants throughout the Northeastern states.
In Rhode Island, locals flock to Iggy’s Doughboy and Chowder House in Narragansett and Al’s Seafood in Warwick for their award-winning clam cakes.
Meanwhile, in Connecticut, Abbott’s Lobster in the Rough is a must-visit destination for delicious clam cakes.
Other popular spots in the US include The Clam Shack in Kennebunkport, Maine, and Charley’s Restaurant & Saloon in Chincoteague Island, Virginia.
Regional differences in clam cake preparation
Regional differences in clam cake preparation vary depending on the area.
In New England, traditional clam cakes are typically made with chopped quahogs or hard-shell clams. Meanwhile, in Maryland and surrounding areas, soft-shell clams are used instead to give the cake a more delicate texture and flavor.
Some regions may opt for alternative ingredients such as shrimp or crab instead of clams.
Clam cakes are a delicious and popular snack or appetizer enjoyed year-round. With their classic combination of clams, flour, Old Bay seasoning, garlic powder, and black pepper, these tasty treats are sure to please everyone. Whether served with a side of tartar sauce or cocktail sauce for dipping, buttery mashed potatoes or rice, or with a topping of melted butter and lemon juice, clam cakes are a flavorful and versatile dish that can be enjoyed in many different ways.