Recipe 103 from The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook by Deb Perelman
This recipe can be found in Deb Perelman’s “The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook” on pages 299-300.
Oh, how I wanted to be in love with the last food recipe in this cookbook. Wouldn’t that be the very best thing ever…that the last recipe is really my favorite of the whole book!?
Sadly, this one goes down for my least favorite and least edible. How sad.
But don’t take my word for it. I don’t like clams no matter what you do to them! I’ve had clams that were deep fried in New Orleans at a pubby type restaurant on Canal Street and those were equally as revolting. But probably more so…just because when I bit into the thing, its briney juices squirted out on my shirt. Memorable.
But take heart you clam lovers out there! My husband is in your camp and he said these were some of the tastiest he’s had. He loved the chorizo with them for the hardy flavor they add to the dish. My daughter and I joined in eating the chorizo and bread crumbs left over….those are finger-licking good 👍
I found clams at our local Whole Foods for $6.99 a lb. These are longneck clams which were bigger then the smaller ones that I don’t remember the name for! I wasn’t sure if I would be able to find clams but got lucky with plenty in stock. This was definitely my first time purchasing and cooking these little sea critters and I had fun with it even though I didn’t find it appetizing. There’s something fun and giddy inducing to work with a new ingredient like this. I feel so accomplished and love adding it to my novice cook resume.
I found these easy to make and while intimidating because of what they are it feels mostly fool proof because they aren’t a complicated ingredient. I did have to throw one away because Deb said if after soaking any are open and do not close by tapping on the shell then you need to throw them out. All the other opened up pretty after 5-7 min in the beer. I used my Dutch oven because it had the right fitting lid I needed.
Once they are all open you’re supposed to twist off the shell sides you’re not using which was very easy to distinguish as the clam is attached to one side when they open. You’ll put them in a broil safe pan like a cast iron skillet because you’ll add butter and the chorizo breadcrumbs before putting it under the broiler to finish.
I had a little helper along the way scrubbing the clams, adding butter and topping them with the breadcrumbs. She wasn’t as grossed out by them as I was which made her happy company to help me out.
I think they look impressive but I just can’t handle the briney, chewey, rubbery experience of them. But don’t let my aversions keep you away from this recipe. Please give them a try next time you shopping for clams :-) I think you’ll like them.
This does it for the food recipes!! Holy cow! 2 more drink recipes and this project is finished! Let’s do this!