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Jul 28, 2008 01:32 PM

Cornmeal soak for clams: how exactly you do it?

Do you put them in tap water? Salt? For how long?

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  1. Are they hard shell clams? If so, do not soak, only wash them off. Soaking in water will leech out any flavor. In the fridge, put them them in a bowl (soup plate), soak a towel in cold water, wring it out, and cover them. That will keep them fresh and cold. Ice isn't needed, but if you do, put the clams on it, not in it.

    2 Replies
    1. re: toitoi

      they are soft shells and I was told one needs to soak to get some sand out?

      1. re: galka

        Soak them in cold water. 1 cup of salt to 3 quarts of water. Either overnight or for a couple of hours.

        I've used cornmeal, if I had it. The theory being, that the clams will eat it and disgorge more sand, and make them plumper. It's questionable; they didn't taste any different to me.

    2. this is probably only necessary if you harvested the clams yourself. Almost all of the clams you can buy in the store are aquacultured and are grown suspended above the bottom so they don't get sandy.

      1. The original comment has been removed
        1. This is how I do it (sometimes overnight, sometimes just a few hours):

          1. We just had steamers on Saturday. First, I would never keep them overnight. I always cook them the same day I get them (personal preference). I just rinse them in a colander for a while until they look clean and then cook them right away. You are not going to get all the sand out, which is why most of the steamer recipes say "drink the clam broth taking care to let the sand settle to the bottom of the pot first". Heavenly stuff.