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Clamming along Massachusetts' North Shore, feasting on Wellfleet oysters on Cape Cod, savoring just-caught lobster in view of the rocky coast of Maine — these are all prime seafood experiences. Months missing an 'r' — May, June, July and August — are thought to be the best for cold water seafood in New England, a time of briny bounty and top of the catch freshness. Here are some mouth-watering ways to savor these creatures of the sea.

Simple Steamed Lobster

Lobster season kicks off in early June, a time to spotlight the sweet, firm flesh of this cold water prize, best enjoyed simply prepared at maximum freshness. Gently steaming your catch yields the most tender meat, and it couldn't be simpler. Put two inches of seawater or salted water in the bottom of a pot large enough to hold the lobsters without crowding. Set a steaming rack in the bottom, and bring the water to a boil. Lobster

Add the live lobsters one at a time, cover the pot and set the timer — figure on a little less than 10 minutes per pound. Serve the lobster with drawn butter, grilled corn mango salsa on the side and of course bibs all around. Corn Salsa

Get Crabby

This deconstructed crab roll swaps crab meat for the pricier lobster without losing a hint of flavor. A swab of melted butter on the soft rolls before grilling is key, as is pristine crab meat and a hint of Spice Islands® Smoked Paprika in the flavorful mayonnaise-based dressing. Crab Roll

Scallops and Slaw

Sea scallops, plentiful along the New England coast, are lauded for their size, sweetness and toothsome texture. This zesty recipe for Smoky Sautéed Scallops on Wilted Brussels Sprouts Slaw with Tangerine Dressing gets its verve from bits of red onion, cayenne pepper and fresh citrus, an elegant addition to any summertime table. Scallops

Tomatoes Meet Shrimp

Tomato lovers swoon come summer time, which is why this recipe for Shrimp Gazpacho is such a winner. This popular warm weather specialty is low in calories and the perfect showcase for shrimp steamed to just-right pinkness. Substitute fresh tomatoes for canned diced, a pinch of thyme, tarragon and cayenne pepper, and this chilled starter can set the mood for a refreshing summer lunch or supper.
Shrimp
Cod

Lemony Dill Delight

Lemon and dill are ideal culinary pals, just the right combo of earthy herbal flavor with bright notes of zesty citrus. Although this recipe for Lemon Dill Cod is designed with meaty, New England codfish in mind, the tangy, Dijon-flavored marinade will also work beautifully with scallops, shrimp and just about any other type of seafood.

Beth D'Addono is a food and travel writer based in New Orleans. She regularly writes about flavors Creole and global for outlets from USAToday.com and 10Best.com to Country Roads and AAA World. Her latest book is The Hunt New Orleans, an authentically different guidebook to her city.