Neil Kleinberg’s New England Clambake

Neil Kleinberg’s New England Clambake

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Chef Neil Kleinberg, a born-and-raised New Yorker, is no stranger to the flavors of Maine recipes. His award-winning restaurant Clinton St. Baking Company — co-owned with DeDe Lahman — features some menu items inspired by coastal New England, such as its popular wild Maine blueberry pancakes with maple butter. Here, the chef walks us through how to make a real New England clambake right by the seawater, perfect for a breezy summer get-together.



1011⁄4 lb. Live Lobsters, preferably female for the red roe
2 lb.Gulf Shrimps, size 16/20 shell on
3 lb.Mussels, scrubbed and debearded
5–6Andouille Sausages or Smoked Kielbasa Sausages,
cut into 3 in. chunks
3–4 lb.Yukon Gold or Red Bliss Potatoes, washed and scrubbed
10–12Corns, left whole
2Vidalia Onions, cut in 1⁄4 in. with the skin on
2Garlics, cut in half horizontally
1⁄2 lb.Bushel Seaweed (the kind they pack lobster in)
2 lb.Sweet Butter, melted and kept warm for dipping
6Lemons, cut in wedges for squeezing
Lobster Crackers


Step 1

At the beach, dig a hole with the following approximate proportions: 2 feet wide, 1-11⁄2 feet deep and 4 feet long. Line the hole with stones from the beach. Build a fire inside the hole, and cover it with rocks. Heat the stones for 2-3 hours.

Step 2

Remove coals or embers from the hole. Arrange hot stones evenly across the bottom of the hole. Place fresh seaweed on top of the hot stones.

Step 3

Working quickly, layer the foods evenly on top of the seaweed. Layer the ingredients in the following order: clams, mussels, sausages, potatoes, corn, onions, garlic, and lobsters.

Step 4

Cover the food with a clean, wet cloth (a cheesecloth or clean new kitchen towels are good options). Then, place the remaining seaweed on top of the cloth.

Step 5

Cover the entire hole of food with a wet tarpaulin (use some cool stones to keep the tarpaulin in place), sealing in the steam created by the hot stones and seaweed. Allow a small amount of steam to escape to relieve pressure. Let the bake cook for 1 hour or more. Once the potatoes are soft, the bake is complete. Serve the bake with melted butter, lemon wedges and lobster crackers!

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This article appears in Summer 2021 issue of Chanintr Living Download full issue

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