The Dump

September 9, 2009

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Serves 10

“The Dump’’ that Henry Santoro makes consists of potatoes, sausages, corn, shrimp, littlenecks, and mussels steamed over a pot of water filled with shellfish steaming spices. There are several brands on the market; Santoro says it doesn’t matter which one you buy. Blue Crab Bay Co. brand, a mixture of coriander, peppercorns, allspice, celery seed, dill seed, crushed red pepper, and bay leaves, is the one he used recently.


1 bottle (12 ounces) chili sauce
3 tablespoons prepared white horseradish
Juice of 1 lemon
1. In a bowl, combine the chili sauce, horseradish, and lemon juice. Stir well.

2. Cover and refrigerate for several hours or overnight.


1 cup mayonnaise
1 cup sour cream
1/2 cup Dijon mustard
3 scallions, finely chopped
Salt and pepper, to taste
1. In a bowl, combine the mayonnaise, sour cream, mustard, scallions, salt, and pepper. Stir well.

2. Cover and refrigerate for several hours or overnight.


4 quarts water
1 packet shellfish steaming spices
3 pounds boiling potatoes, halved if small or quartered if large
4 pounds sausage (a mix of andouille, chorizo, and chicken sausage), cut into 2-inch chunks
10 ears fresh corn, shucked and halved
6 pounds shrimp (10 to 12 count in a pound), thawed if frozen
3 pounds littleneck clams
5 pounds mussels, debearded
1 cup (2 sticks) butter
1. In a large pot with a steamer insert, bring the water to a boil over high heat. Add the steaming spices and reduce the heat to medium-high.

2. Set the insert over the simmering water (the ingredients should steam, not boil; remove some liquid if there’s too much). Add the potatoes to the insert. Cover and steam the potatoes for 15 minutes or until nearly cooked.

3. Add the sausages and corn. Stir with a long-handled spoon. Cover and steam for 10 minutes more. The sausages will start to look plump and shiny.

4. Add the shrimp, cover and steam for 5 minutes more or until the shrimp start to turn pink. Stir with the spoon.

5. Add the clams, cover and steam for 10 minutes more or until the clams start to open.

6. Add the mussels, stir, cover, and steam 5 minutes or until mussels open. (Total cooking time is about 45 minutes.)

7. Meanwhile, line a table (preferably outdoors) with brown paper bags or newspapers. Transfer the sauces to small bowls and set on the table with a big stack of napkins and a large bowl for shells and corncobs.

8. When all the food is cooked, lift out the steamer insert and dump the contents directly onto the paper. Drop the butter on top of the pile of food. Dig in. Adapted from Henry Santoro