Winter Clamming Abides


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Alicen Sharp holding a clam she raked up

The commercial clammers are always out there searching for clams around the inland bays.  They have their favorite spots and are quite successful on most days.  Wading in chest deep water to get to areas that this time of year which are much easier to access due to the lower winter tides.  These watermen know to carefully harvest areas so there are always an abundance of clams around the inland bays for their return trips.  Back in the day there was a clam farm of sorts right next to and outside of Massseys Landing and some think that is why the area is so popular to look for clams today.  In summer time you can’t clam in some of these areas the water is too deep, even at a dead low tide.  However this time of year, it isn’t just the commercial clammers that are out there.


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Clams casino and steamed clams .. photo from Alicen Sharp

Alicen Sharp loves the outdoors and like many of us, this time of year is her down time from the summer madness and work grind.  When you love the outdoors, the off-season can be a special time of year.  “My boyfriend and I like going in the winter because our schedules are so crazy in the summer. This is our down time and we both love being outside, so it’s a bonus to bring home dinner while enjoying a nice day.”  Why clam in the winter aside from the fact there are fewer people here and you have the time?  Well the best thing about clamming this time of year is that the clams hold up better too. Plus with the seasonal areas opened up it gives you options to clam in areas that are easily accessible.”   There are some red zone areas that are open seasonally from December to April.  In the summer time these areas are always closed due to high bacteria levels.  These are the yellow areas marked on the clamming map (below) in the Delaware Fishing Guide.


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Clams casino ready for the oven, a simple recipe

I’ve been eating steamed clams since I was a little kid and absolutely love them.  There are days I crave steamed clams, covered in dripping hot melted butter, real butter not that imitation junk.  The broth left over from steaming is especially good after a big meal of steamed clams, with a touch of butter and lemon added.  I asked Alicen what is her favorite way to serve up their clams, steamed or casino.  “We do both. His casino recipe is so simple but all our friends request that when we bring something for a potluck.”  How do you prepare your clams casino?   “It’s basically the half clam, mozzarella cheese, a half-inch piece of bacon n drizzle butter over the works. Put it under the broiler a few min till done. You get the full flavor of the clam plus it’s simple! “

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Fish On!!

Rich King

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Clamming map for the inland bays and surrounding areas of Delaware


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