New England Style Stuffed Clams
8 clams large, quahogs or cherrystone
3 tbsp unsalted butter 45g
1 clove garlic large (2 small)
1/4 red pepper
1 cup fresh breadcrumbs 30g
2 tbsp fresh parsley finely chopped
1 tbsp lemon juice
1/4 cup parmesan 10g, finely grated
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper (to taste – I used 1/4tsp and you can tell it’s there; you can use paprika if you prefer it not to have the heat)
Preheat the oven to 350F/175C.
Rinse the clams of any grit then steam clams in around 1in/23cm boiling water until they open up, around 8-10min. Remove them from the water (save some of it), allow the clams to cool then take them off the shell – if a bit gets stuck don’t worry about it, that’s the ‘foot’ that’s not as tender to eat. Split the shells open and keep 8 of the best for stuffing. NB if clams don’t open on steaming, don’t use them, this means they were already dead.
While the clams are cooking, finely dice the onion and pepper and mince the garlic.
Warm the butter in a skillet/frying pan and soften the onion in the butter for a minute or two. Then add the garlic and pepper and cook another minute before adding the breadcrumbs.
Cook the crumbs a minute before adding everything else (parsley, lemon juice, parmesan and cayenne pepper (or paprika). Mix well. Add a tablespoon or two of the water from cooking the clams so that the mixture holds together fairly well.
Divide the mixture between the 8 shells you held back and press it so it holds together. Put them in a baking dish and bake for approx 20 minutes until they gently brown on top.
-From Caroline’s Cooking