Smoke-Roasted Florida Oysters and Clams

Smoke-Roasted Florida Oysters and Clams

More Recipes from Episode 203: Gulf Coast Grill


Smoke-Roasted Florida Oysters and Clams

Recipe Notes

  • Yield: Serves 3 to 4 as an appetizer
  • Method: Smoke-roasting/direct grilling
  • Equipment: Oyster and clam shucking knives; grilling basket and a shellfish rack; hardwood chunks or chips (unsoaked)


For the Topping

  • 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, cut into 4 pieces, divided use
  • 8 strips bacon, cut crosswise into 1/4-inch slivers
  • 1 bunch scallions, trimmed, white and green parts thinly sliced
  • 2 jalapenos, seeded and minced
  • ¼ cup minced fresh dill or parsley

  • 1 cup white wine

For the Shellfish

  • 16 fresh oysters in the shell
  • 16 fresh cherrystone clams in the shell
  • Hot sauce, for serving (optional) 

Recipe Steps

1: Make the filling: In a skillet, melt 1 tablespoon butter in a skillet. Add the bacon, scallions, and jalapenos, and cook over medium heat until the bacon is crisp and the mixture is sizzling and golden brown. Stir in the dill. The recipe can be prepared ahead to this stage.

2: Set up your grill for direct grilling and heat to high.

3: Shuck the oysters, discarding the top shells: Pass the knife under each oyster to loosen it from the bottom shell, but try not to spill any of the juice. Arrange the oysters in a shellfish rack or on a wire rack, again, taking care not to spill the juices.  Place a spoonful of the bacon mixture in each shell. (Save some for serving.)

4: Place the clams in a grill basket. (Alternatively, use a disposable aluminum foil pan.)

5: Return the remaining bacon mixture to the stovetop or the side burner of your grill. Reheat over medium heat. Add the wine and cook until the wine is reduced. Whisk in the remaining butter. Keep warm.

6: Place the oysters on their shellfish rack on the grill grate, adding wood chunks or chips (unsoaked) to the fire. Smoke-roast (lid down) until just cooked—the bacon mixture will begin to sizzle, about 5 minutes. Remove from the grill and replace with the clams in their grill basket. (You can leave the lid up.) Cook until the clams open, 3 to 4 minutes. Discard any that fail to open.

7: Tip the clams into the bacon and wine mixture and stir. Serve with hot sauce, if desired, as well as a crisp sauvignon blanc or cold beer.

Recipe Tips

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Steven Raichlen’s Project Fire is a production of Maryland Public Television, Barbacoa, Inc., and Resolution Pictures. © 2019 Barbacoa, Inc. Photos by Chris Bierlein.