Not a huge steamers fan, myself, but we eat a lot of seafood in my house. Love it! Clams don't need a lot of water to steam in, whether they're little necks, steamers or whatever. An inch or two of water in the bottom of the pot, the clams and a good pot with a well fitting lid is all you need. Melted butter to dip them in is terrific. Add a bit of lemon juice and you're in heaven
First, for any shellfish you should ABSOLUTELY follow Joanna K's advice about picking through them first to make sure they're fresh. Pick up each clam. We usually do about 4# of mussels at a time (a huge favorite in our house) and a quick check of each one doesn't take long.
For mussels, we do the following in a 6-qt dutch oven:
- about an inch of white wine in the pot
- a spoonful of dijon mustard
- a spoonful of minced garlic (we just use the jarred kind)
- a good splash of lemon juice
Add the mussels, cover and steam on medium-high heat until they're opened -- about 5 - 10 minutes, maybe (it doesn't seem to take long).
Serve 'em in bowls with a bit of melted butter to dip, if you'd like (I usually eat mine straight up). Some bread is a good accompaniment. We usually do these as an appetizer, all sitting around a big pot in the middle of the kitchen table. So good!
Don't be afraid of seafood. Go for it and enjoy!