Shellfish Recipes



Sometimes there's nothing better than a fresh lobster roll or a shucked oyster on a beachy summer day. The world's obsession with shellfish has a lot to do with flavor, of course, but it's also tied to health. Shellfish are lean and rich in iron, zinc and vitamin B12. Plus they cook up quickly and usually go from the ocean to your dinner table in record time. F&W's guide to shellfish includes great wine pairing ideas, delicious global recipes and new cooking techniques.

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Calamari Toast with Hawthorn Sweet-and-Sour Sauce
This crunchy party appetizer from 2021 F&W Best New Chef Lucas Sin, of Junzi Kitchen and Nice Day in New York City, is inspired by classic Chinese shrimp toast. Here, Sin combines calamari and shrimp for the toast topper; a quick blitz in the food processor yields a tasty mixture that fries up perfectly crisp. Haw flakes, Chinese sweets made from the fruit of Chinese hawthorn, are a sweet and tangy snack usually served to guests with tea or as a treat for children; here, Sin uses them to flavor a dipping sauce for the toasts. The sauce can be used immediately, but Lucas recommends refrigerating it overnight for the best flavor. For a store-bought alternative, Sin recommends Mae Ploy Sweet Chili Sauce.
Oyster Casserole with Cracker Crumbs
In this quick, simple recipe from The Fannie Farmer Cookbook by Marion Cunningham, tender and juicy oysters are drizzled with a bit of cream and hot sauce, then baked in a sumptuous, buttery crumb mixture for a bit of crunch. Serve as an appetizer for a dinner party, or as a side dish with ham or turkey. For individual servings, the mixture can be divided among 4 ramekins instead of one baking dish. Read more about how this casserole stars at one Food & Wine editor's Thanksgiving.
Shrimp with Cheddar-Parmesan Grits
Chef Michael Reed gives us a lesson on why it's worth it to take the time to peel and devein your own shrimp: He cooks the shrimp shells along with vegetables and herbs to create a deeply-flavorful stock, which he then uses as a sauce for these shrimp and grits. Pan-fried shrimp are spooned on top of a mound of cheesy grits, and topped with the rich shellfish stock as the finishing touch. Store extra stock in your freezer for your next batch of shrimp and grits, or add it to seafood soups, stews, and sauces for a boost of flavor.
Green Curry Lobster Stew with Sweet Potato and Mushrooms
""Lobster stew is one of the pillars of Maine cooking," according to chefs Mike Wiley and Andrew Taylor, of Eventide Oyster Co. in Portland. For this green curry–laced version, they took cues from tom kha, a coconut milk–based Thai soup, and enriched it with umami-heavy Golden Mountain sauce and hen-of-the-woods mushroom confit to create a richly-aromatic lobster stew. Sweet potato, curry paste, heavy cream, and coconut milk come together in a well-balanced broth that highlights the sweetness of lobster. Chefs Taylor and Wiley use sweet potato peels to thicken the broth; they lend a creamy, pleasantly-thick body to the stew. While the chefs always use fresh lobster, look for pre-cooked lobster and store-bought lobster stock (such as Better than Bouillon Lobster Base) to make this dish weeknight-friendly."
Lobster Frites
Derrick Westbrook turns the classic moules frites into one show-stopping meal by replacing the mussels with garlic-butter drenched lobster. The double-fry method for cooking the fries ensures that they will be perfectly cooked — creamy on the inside and crispy on the outside. The first fry will cook them through, and the second will turn the outside brown and crisp. Adding Old Bay to the aioli is a genius move. Serve the meal with a bright, crisp, minerally Chablis.
Clams in Garlic Sorrel Cream
Chef Eric Adjepong's steamed clams get a burst of bright flavor from green, tangy sorrel. If you can't find sorrel, or it's out of season, Adjepong recommends using fresh basil and adding a little extra lemon juice to mimic its tart, lemony flavor. Don't skip the warm crusty bread to soak up the delicious sauce.
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More Shellfish

Lobster Risotto
Rating: Unrated 1
A small pinch of saffron goes a long way in imparting a vibrant golden hue and floral fragrance to this creamy, indulgent lobster risotto. Precooked lobster and bottled clam juice deliver robust layers of flavor with a minimum amount of effort, making this a perfect weeknight supper. Pair it with a bottle of white Bordeaux, recommends sommelier Tonya Pitts, of Les Dames D'Escoffier International, San Francisco. "I love white Bordeaux with this easy dish. It highlights the lobster and creaminess of the risotto, ultimately becoming intertwined with the flavor and textures."
Hot Crab Dish
Rating: Unrated 1
A close cousin of casseroles, hot dish is a staple on family dinner tables and potlucks across the Midwest United States. This version channels the flavor and fun of a crab boil, with Old Bay seasoning, dashes of Worcestershire and hot sauce, and a hint of lemon, adding layers of flavor to sweet fresh lump crabmeat. Frozen potato tots add crunch to this creamy casserole, making it a hearty and filling dinner.

Barbecued Oysters with Smoky Uni Butter

Briny uni and acidic lemon, mixed with smoky paprika and rich butter, combine to make an extraordinary flavored butter to top oysters before roasting. If shucking oysters isn’t your thing, you can ask your fishmonger to do the job for you.