Recipe for Stuffed Clams
Along the Atlantic shore, stuffed clams are often called stuffies.
Clam Stuffies Recipe
Clams are a bivalve, or two-shelled, mollusk. There are three principal varieties, soft-shelled, hard-shelled, and razor clams from the Pacific. The hard-shelled are round and come in small littlenecks, medium cherrystone and large quahogs or chowder clams. When buying clams, be sure the shells are clamped tightly together; this indicates that the clam is alive. Discard any broken or cracked shells. To get rid of all the sand, scrub under running water and then soak in a salt-water brine for about 1/2 hour.
If fresh clams aren't available in your area, you can substitute 1/2 cup chopped canned clams and use clam juice in place of the clam liquor. Then, bake the clam mixture in large mushroom caps.
Ingredients for Clam Stuffies
12 large hard-shell clams, shucked
3/4 cup fresh bread crumbs (about 1-1/2 slices of bread)
1/4 cup fresh grated Parmesan cheese
2 tablespoons finely chopped chives or green onion tops
1 teaspoon dried basil leaves
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano leaves
1 fresh garlic clove, minced
1 strip lean bacon, finely chopped and cooked until crisp, drain.
Step 1...Buy the clams the same day you plan to cook them. Ask your market to shuck them for you, reserving the liquor and the shells. Cover the clams and liquor and refrigerate until ready to prepare the recipe. Separate the shells and scrub 12 of the halves and set aside. (Can double recipe using all the halves by adding canned clams and juice).
Step 2...Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Coarsely chop the clams (you should have about 1/2 cup). In a medium-size bowl, combine the chopped clams, 3/4 cup bread crumbs, 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, 2 tablespoons chives or onion tops, 1 teaspoon dried basil, 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano, and 1 minced garlic clove. Stir in enough of the reserved clam liquor to moisten (about 1 tablespoon). Stir in the crisp bacon.
Step 3...Spoon a slightly rounded tablespoon of the clam mixture into each clam shell half. Arrange on a large baking sheet. Bake for 10 to 15 minutes or just until hot.
Makes 12 clam stuffies.
Prepare the same as for stuffed clams, spooning a rounded teaspoon of the clam mixture into each of 18 large mushroom caps instead of the clam shell halves. Bake as directed for the stuffies.
Makes 18 hot appetizers.
Prep time: 25 minutes Cooking time: 10 minutes
1 Stuffie equals 48 calories. 1g total fat. 1g saturated fat. 6g protein. 3g carbohydrate. 0g fiber. 83mg sodium. 15mg cholesterol.