8 LARGE quahogs or cherry stone clams
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 Vidalia onion, finely diced
1 LARGE clove garlic, minced
1/4 red pepper, finely diced
1 cup FRESH seasoned breadcrumbs
2 tablespoons finely minced FRESH parsley
Juice of 2 lemons, divided
1/4 cup finely grated Parmesan
1/8 teaspoon sweet Paprika
- Preheat the oven to 350°.
- Wash the clams free of any grit.
- Steam clams in around 1 inch of boiling water until they open up, about 8-10 minutes.
- Remove clams from the water (reserve a couple tablespoons of clam water).
- Allow the clams to cool before taking them out of the shell – if the “foot” gets stuck, don’t worry about it since it’s not as tender anyway.
- Split the shells open and keep 8 of them for stuffing.
- Heat the butter in a skillet over medium high heat until onion is soft.
- Add the garlic and peppers cooking another minute before adding the breadcrumbs. Add the bread crumbs and blend well.
- Add parsley, 1/2 of the lemon juice, Parmesan and paprika mixing well.
- Add a tablespoon or two of the clam water to bind the mixture. 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 about 20 minutes until they gently brown on top.
- Drizzle with lemon juice just before serving.
- If clams don’t open on steaming, don’t use them, this means they were already dead.
- When I make the bread crumbs I start with 2-3 slices of buttered sourdough sprinkled with lemon pepper, baked to toast in the oven and then ground in a food processor.