Most people visiting Ocean Point Inn Maine have one thing in common:  they want to eat lobster while they are here.

Some like to cook their own, some order lobsters in a restaurant, some enjoy the casual setting at a lobster dock and some get the ultimate treat of a traditional Maine Lobster/Clam Bake.clam1

If you are buying your own to cook, you may have some questions.  Hard shell or soft shell?  You buy lobsters by weight so since the soft shells weigh less, the amount of meat for money just about evens out.  How long will they stay alive in the refrigerator?  They will live 12-24 hours covered with a damp cloth.  How much water should be added to the pot?  One to two inches of water in the bottom of the pot will steam the lobsters.  Bring the water to clam3a boil, add the lobsters and steam for 18-20 minutes.  What about the elastic bands?  Leave the bands on while they are steaming.  You risk being pinched if you take them off.  Should you get pinched, do not hold the lobster and do not break off the claw.  This does not release your finger!  Let the lobster rest on the counter and your finger will be released.

Ordering lobster at Ocean Point Inn you can enjoy a “Lazy Lobster” where the lobster meat has been removed from the shell.  This saves you the work and mess!

Visit a local lobster dock where you can eat the lobster and all the fixin’s outside on a picnic table.  Having your lobster juice squirt a neighbor is okay in this setting!

The ultimate way to have lobster is at a traditional Lobster/Clambake where lobsters, clams, corn, potatoes, onions, etc. are steamed in seaweed along the shore.  My family is now in the third generation of Lobster/Clam Bake masters.  Each generation has had their favorite bake container.  We started with a cast iron sink for decades and then moved to a stainless steel sink.  This past weekend my son did one with a gas grill lid found at the dump!!  Nothing like good old Yankee ingenuity.

clam5On bake day you need to time everything around the tide!  Collect a barrel of seaweed at low tide and plan to have high tide put out the fire at the end of the feast.

With the rocky coast here you can find a place to balance your container evenly and have room for a fire underneath. Pour water in the bottom of the container.   Wrap the potatoes in foil and put the onions, clams and eggs in net bags.  Leave some of  the husk on the corn. cabbage2 These items go in first followed by the lobsters with the clams on top.  Cover with more seaweed and a wet canvas.  Light the fire and cook 45-50 minutes.  Enjoy!

In the Boothbay Region you can experience a wonderful Lcabbage1obster/Clam Bake on Cabbage Island.  Their boat, the “Bennie Alice,” picks you up in Boothbay Harbor and gives you a great scenic ride with commentary as you go to the island.  The owners and staff are very friendly and helpful.  Once you are on the island you can hike about, watch your meal cooking by the water and just enjoy the views of the sea.  The staff serves a delicious fish chowder and drinks.  You walk down to where the food is cabbage3cooking and pick up your meal of two lobsters, clams, a potato, onion, corn and an egg.  The fabulous feast is topped off with a four inch high homemade blueberry cake and coffee.  If you can move after all this food, there is time for more exploring before you board the “Bennie Alice” to sail back to Boothbay Harbor.

Remember your camera as your trip will be full of Kodak moments!

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Have you ever eaten a red hot dog?  If so, it was probably in Maine!hotdog4

Different states have their own favorites.  In California it is the “Downtown Dog” or the “Danger Dog,” in Massachusetts there is the “Fenway Frank,” in Michigan they serve the “Coney Dog,” in Ohio you find the “Polish Boy” and the “Hungarian Dog,” Rhode Island has the “Hot Weiner” and in Maine the most popular variety is in a natural red colored casing.  This red variety is sometimes called “Red Snappers.”hot dogs3

W.A. Bean is the only company in Maine that makes red hot dogs.  This company was started in Bangor over a hundred fifty years ago by Albert Bean.  He started a one man butcher shop on Ohio Street, but the business took off.  Five generations and over four million hot dogs later it is a very large meat business.

On Saturday, August 13th, Dexter, Maine, hosts the annual Maine Red Hot Dog Festival.  There will be a full day of fun activities including the Bun Run, Hot Dog Eating Contest, Cook-Off Contest, Music, Crafts, food and much more.  Come celebrate Maine’s Red Hot Dog!red dog

Hot Dogs in Maine and most of New England are served in a top-loading style roll with toasted buttery sides,  a soft inside and a flat bottom.  There is plenty of room for condiments and it will sit upright.  In Maine these rolls are also used for Lobster Rolls and Fried Clam Rolls.

It was actually fried clams and not hot dogs that led to this top loaded roll.  In the 1940’s Howard Johnson needed a bun that would hold their clam strips and not fall over.  The bun created by J.J. Nissen filled the bill.  The hinged hot dig roll did not come out until the 1050’s.  lobster roll

If you are outside of New England and would like to have a red hot dog in a top loading bun, you can order them online.

Remember the Red Hot Dog Festival in Dexter, Maine, in August !

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