These recipes — from Mariner’s Menu: 30 Years of Fresh Seafood Ideas by Joyce Taylor — use finfish and shellfish that are available from North Carolina waters in September, October and November. Check with your local fish market for their freshest offerings.

For information on seasonal seafood, go to: or check the Mariner’s Menu blog at The Mariner’s Menu seafood resource book is available at many bookstores, or to order from North Carolina Sea Grant, call 919/515-9101.

Steamed Clams in Wine Broth

Discard any clams that are open or do not open when tapped. Under cold, running water, scrub clams thoroughly with a stiff brush.

Bring margarine, wine, water, parsley and Tabasco to boil in bottom of steamer. Arrange clams on rack and place in steamer. Cover. Steam until clams open, about 8 to 10 minutes. Discard any that do not open.

Divide clams into 3 or 4 serving bowls. Ladle broth over them. Serves 4.

Baked Grouper with Basil-Parmesan Butter

Prepare Basil-Parmesan Butter and set aside.

Brush fillets with melted margarine.

Lightly salt and pepper. Bake at 450 F until fish flakes easily with a fork, about 30 minutes. Cut into serving-size pieces. Serve with Basil-Parmesan Butter. Serves 6 to 8.

Basil-Parmesan Butter:

In small bowl, mix together margarine, basil, parsley, Parmesan, pepper and lemon juice. Spread over warm fish.

Heavenly Seafood Casserole

Remove any shell or cartilage from crab meat. Cook shrimp in salted or seasoned water until pink, about 3 to 4 minutes. Remove shrimp, reserving water. Cook scallops in same water about 2 to 3 minutes, just until tender. Drain well.

Peel shrimp.

Melt margarine in medium saucepan and blend in flour. Add milk gradually and cook over low heat, stirring constantly, until thick. Add sherry, Worcestershire, 1 tablespoon Parmesan, salt, pepper and paprika. Blend well. Add shrimp, scallops, flaked fish and crab meat. Pour into 1 1/2-quart casserole.

Mix remaining Parmesan with bread crumbs and sprinkle over top. Bake at 375 F about 20 to 25 minutes, or until heated and bubbly. Serves 8 to 10.

This article was published in the Autumn 2010 issue of Coastwatch.

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