While in North Korea, we had the opportunity to try a lot of different dishes. Without a doubt, the most unique meal I had was that of North Korean Gasoline Clams.

stone table full of clams ready to be cooked.
All the clams arranged on a stone table before being set alight.

What are they?

So, you might be wondering what exactly are Gasoline clams? Are they some type of clam they get in North Korea? Actually, the clams are regular clams just like everywhere else. The Gasoline in the name describes how the clams are cooked. They are doused in gasoline and set alight. This might not sound the safest way of cooking them, but the end result is delicious!

North Korean Gasoline clams on fire
North Korean Gasoline Clams

How to cook Gasoline Clams

The first step is to arrange all the clams on a suitable surface. Luckily, the resort we were staying at had a small stone table that seemed designed for this exact purpose. The clams were all arranged facing downwards to minimise the risk of gasoline getting inside.

Once they were all arranged, our driver took two bottles of gasoline and squirted some onto the clams which he then set alight. He continued to feed the fire from the bottles for around 5 minutes. Once the fire had finished burning off the gasoline, the clams were ready to eat!

Adding more gasoline to the clams.
Our driver, adding more gasoline to the clams.

How did they taste?

Now, I’m not actually a big fan of seafood. I adore fish, but dislike most other things from the sea. Despite that, I absolutely adored these clams. They were incredibly delicious and had absolutely zero taste of gasoline.

We had a delightful time gathered around the table cracking open the clams while avoiding burning our fingers. However, there is a slight risk that the clams are not fully cooked but luckily the North Koreans have a solution for that. After every clam you eat, you take a shot of Soju. Soju is a very strong Korean alcohol. I loved the clams, but am not such a huge fan of the Soju. Together with our guides, we soon made short work of the clams before heading inside the hotel for yet another meal!

The clams on a stone table
We quickly devoured the clams!
error