There are few meals I look forward to more than the ones we prepare at the Jersey Shore in the month of August. This is the time when the corn is perfect, the beefsteak tomatoes are full of flavor, the steamers are plentiful and everyone is famished from spending the day at the beach.
Speaking of steamers, also called little neck clams, my 6 and 8 year old daughters love them and eat them like they were candy. When we first started coming down to Avalon, NJ, my wife and I would share a couple of dozen. Last year the girls started eating them and now we steam up 50 of them for an appetizer and 100 for a meal.
I am both surprised and thrilled that the girls enjoy them. I know I wasn’t eating steamers when I was their age even though they were available on our summer vacations to the beach. I’m not sure I could get past the texture but my girls chew them up like they were chewing bubble gum.
Our second night here, we started with crab claws as an appetizer with a dipping sauce that I think was just mayo seasoned with a little Dijon mustard. For our meal, we enjoyed fresh Jersey corn seasoned with butter and salt and pepper.
My youngest likes us to cut it off the cob so she can eat it with a spoon. This is served with fresh Jersey tomatoes, sliced and cut again in half served with salt and pepper. This year both my girls tried the tomatoes but only the oldest really cared for them. Before this the only tomato product she would consume had to be in a ketchup bottle or tomato sauce.
Lastly, we split up 100 steamers that were perfectly steamed up in an big old aluminum pot that looks like it has steamed thousands of them over the years. We served them with melted butter for dipping. I’m not sure if the girls like the salty flavor of the clams or if it isn’t just the butter.
Doesn’t matter, this is the perfect Jersey shore meal to me and most likely we will be enjoying some part of it every night we are down here.