I hope everyone had a terrific long weekend! Michael and I spent the weekend in Connecticut with our friend Jennie and her family. Saturday morning Jennie’s Dad Jay took us into Long Island Sound on his boat for a clam digging excursion. After Jay found the ideal spot to drop anchor, we jumped overboard with our clam hoes. It was low-tide and the water was about three-feet deep. I wasn’t actually strong enough to dig the clam out of the mud with the rake, so once I hit a shell, I knelt down in the water and dug with my hands.
We brought home our hard-earned catch and Jay showed us how to prepare his famous baked stuffed clams. ‘Stuffies’ are essentially bread stuffing combined with chopped clam meat and baked in a clam shell. Some recipes include white wine and others incorporate chorizo sausage, which adds a delicious spicy kick. I can’t divulge Jay’s secret recipe, but this one is quite similar and I think you’ll be pleased with the results. These make a great Summer appetizer or side dish with grilled steak or seafood.
Baked Stuff Clams
Adapted from Campbell’s Kitchen
12 quahog clams, scrubbed
2 slices bacon, diced
3 tablespoons butter
1 medium onion, chopped (about 1/2 cup)
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder or 1 clove garlic minced
1 1/2 cups Pepperidge Farm Herb Seasoned Stuffing
2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
Heat the oven to 375°F.
Steam open the shells over a pot of boiling water. Remove the clams from the shells, roughly chop the meat and set aside in a medium bowl. Break apart and rinse the shells, discarding any with sharp edges. Arrange the shells on a baking sheet.
Cook the bacon in a 10-inch skillet over medium-high heat until it’s crisp. Remove the bacon from the skillet and drain on paper towels.
Add the butter, onion and garlic powder to the hot bacon drippings and cook until the onion is tender. Stir the stuffing, cheese, parsley and cooked bacon in the skillet and mix lightly. Divide the stuffing mixture evenly among the clams.
Bake for 20 minutes or until the clams are cooked through. Garnish with parsley.