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Apr 13, 2010

White or Red Clam Sauce, Mussels, Seafood Marinara

Clams- Top Necks

Don’t forget to look below. I will have other variations or added ingredients to enhance the taste to the basic recipe.
To easily open clams. Buy Clams in advance. Put them in a bowl/pot and wash the shell. (Rub with your hands to make sure all sand are off of them.) Once outside shell is cleaned put them into the freezer for atleast 1 day. Once frozen, fill the pot with very hot water and leave the clams in there for a few minutes. This forces them to open up and then it is much easier to slide the clam knive in and spread them open. (Clams can also stay frozen for many months.)
Very important!!
When you open the clams and it smells bad, throw that one out! Clams should not have a bad stinky smell to them.

· While opening them place your hand over a empty bowl so any juice from the clams can drop into their first. (you don’t want any bad clam [juice or clam] to mix with the good ones. If ruins the whole thing.)
· If clam is good then place that juice into another bowl. I use a small sauce pot with a small pasta strainer on top. This way when I open the clam and it smells good then I just place it in the strainer. The clam stays on top and the juice of the clam drips to the bottom of the sauce pan.

Basic Recipe: 4 people
6 clams per person. Best size is Top necks. Using the clam knife to scrape clams out of shell into a bowl. As suggested above. If defrosted you can squeeze the yucky part out. (The black part) Or if frozen cut it out with a knife. Or you can leave it because that has flavor too. But, some people like to clean it out. (If clams are still frozen, keep the juice. It looks like a chunk of crushed ice) that will become the clam broth.
1/4 cup Olive Oil
 4 gloves of Garlic
Large Pinch of: Basil, Oregano, Parsley (fresh whenever possibly or dry)
Garlic powder and Black Pepper.
Do NOT add SALT. Clams are already salty.

1. Chop Clams in chunks. Not too small. The scallop piece (the clams piece that is stuck to the shell) must be sliced opposite the grain and small. It is a tougher piece. Set aside.

2. Saute in sauce pan [Med/ High heat] olive Oil and Garlic to lightly golden brown.

3. Add Clams juice and spices. [Med high heat] Stir.

4. Cover and Bring juice to a boil. BE CAREFUL the juice in the pot will overflow so watch out. 
Optional: You can also add whole shelled baby clams in step 4. 

5. Place Clams and 2 TBS butter in boiled juice and cover, bring to first boil, remove lid, count about 15 seconds and remove pot from heat. (You don’t want them to boil/cook to long otherwise they will become hard.

Optional:  Add Shrimp to Clam Sauces. in Step 5.

Shrimps (peeled and cleaned),

That’s it. Now, Place over cooked Linquini. or Banza/Chickpea Pasta

For the whole clams in shells: Once clams shell opens it is cooked.   
  Don’t eat unopened clams.


RED CLAM SAUCE:  Even easier. Look under my recipes for Marinara or Whole plum tomato.

1. Cook sauce.

2. Add just Cleaned chopped clams, ½ amount of the juice and cover. No spices, since they are all ready in the sauce. (If you like it spicy add a spec of hot pepper flakes.)
3. Bring Covered Clams to first boil, remove lid, count about 15 seconds and remove pot from heat. (You don’t want them to boil/cook to long otherwise they will become hard.}

Done. Put over pasta.

 Baked Clams  2 dozen. 

Same as for White Clams Sauce. Plus below:
2 dozen Clams
Breadcrumbs with seasonings (grated cheese, black pepper, Garlic powder, chopped parsley, chopped Basil, onion powder.
1/4 cup chopped celery
1/4 cup Chopped Red Pepper (vegetable)
1/2 cup sour Cream
5 Bacon strips. Cooked, crispy and chopped

  • Make clams as stated above for white Clams Steps 1 - 5. but don't chop clams to small.   
  • Once cooked then next step is to:  Separate Clams from Clam juice:

  • With Bowl underneath to collect clam juice: Place Clams Sauce through strainer.
  • Need In 3 separate bowls :

  • 1 for Clams, 1 for clam juice and 1 for breadcrumb mix
  • In the Clam bowl: Add in  ¼ cup Sour cream. Stir. 

  • In breadcrumb mix bowl:  Pour in little bit of clam juice. Enough just to moisten bread crumb, fluffy up, Don't pat down, otherwise it will be a hard mess.

  • Add 1 - 2 TBS of chopped clams mix,(filling clam 1/2 way.) 
  • 1 tsp of clam juice, 

  • Add a few pieces of :    Finely Chopped Red Pepper (vegetable) and                   finely chopped Celery 

    •  Add the moisten bread crumbs
    • Add chopped bacon bits. 
    • Add: Sprinkle paprika 
    • Place in heated oven on 425 for 10 minutes (until breadcrumb is lightly golden).
    •  Then broil 1-2 minutes (until crispy) 

    NOTE: You don't have to worry about clams being raw because they are already cooked. 

    Steamed Clams or Mussels.

    Place baby shelled clams in pot with butter, garlic powder, black pepper, and a little bit of water. (1/4 cup water enough so the butter doesn’t fry the clams. Cover and cook. When all the shells are opened it is done. The juice is from the butter, water and juices inside the clams.

    For Mussels use Green kiwi mussels (farmed raised) they are large and clean. No bad ones. Most fish markets sell them in boxes. They come opened. Just rinse and clean outside of shell before you cook them. Can be Steamed or cooked with Marinara Sauce/ Whole Chopped Tomato Sauce. Same as above instructions.
    Seafood Marinara:
    Marinara Sauce Recipe. Cook sauce for 5 minutes then add ingredients below and cook for 10 more minutes or until cooked. A pinch of dry red pepper flakes. Cook over Medium heat. Sauce has a small boil to it.
    Clams – shell washed (COOKED WHEN SHELL OPENS UP)
    Also if you don’t want clams in shell then just put some whole clams in there.  I like to cut them up into 4 pcs.

    Shrimp –
    peeled and cleaned (COOKED WHEN SHRIMP TURN PINK)

    Kiwi mussels – rinse shell ( COOKS IN MINUTES )
    Calamari cleaned and sliced (COOKED WHEN WHITE AND FIRM)

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