Clams from the sand to the pan

Posted: Monday, April 05, 2004

After taking the time to dig them up, now what do you do with those clams?

Here are a couple of suggestions. However, there are two simple rules to remember when cooking with clams: First, make sure they are cleaned properly, and second, they only take minutes to cook and should be added last to most recipes or it will be like chewing rubber bands.

Clam Fritters

Lisa Perkins, Arlington, Wash.

1 1/2 cups flour

1/2 cup corn meal

2 teaspoons baking powder

1 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

2 cups minced clams, drained if canned, or less to suit taste

3/4 cup milk

2 eggs slightly beaten

1 tablespoon melted butter

Oil for deep frying

Heat oil to 370 degrees

In large mixing bowl, sift together flour, corn meal, baking powder, salt and pepper.

In small mixing bowl, combine milk, eggs and melted butter. Combine liquid mixture into dry ingredients and mix just until lumps are removed.

Add clams, stir until just combined.

Carefully drop tablespoons of batter into hot oil and fry until brown.

Serve with chowder or eat warm for a snack. Serves four.

Clam Chowder

Scott Misner, Soldotna

8 large potatoes cut into 1 1/2 inch cubes

1/2 pound bacon

1 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic

Fresh ground pepper to taste

Salt to taste

2 cups minced clams

1 large stalk celery, thinly sliced on the diagonal

1 to 1 1/2 quarts milk

Tarragon to taste

1 6-ounce can of French fried onions.

In large skillet, fry bacon until crisp. Remove and save drippings.

After bacon cools, crumble into medium size pieces.

Place sliced celery stalk into skillet with bacon drippings and fry until desired doneness.

Remove from heat and set aside.

Place cubed potatoes in large pot or kettle and add milk. Cook over medium heat until just cooked. Do not overcook or potatoes will turn mushy. Be careful not to scorch milk.

Add the crumbles of bacon, French fried onions, celery and clams.

Simmer gently on low heat until clams are warm and chow-der thickens. Serves eight.

Adding salmon, scallops, halibut and shrimp to this basic chowder recipe makes it a seafood chowder.

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