Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Table for Two - What Can I Do with Canned Clams?

From the kitchen of One Perfect Bite...I know it's a burning question and you've been waiting years for an answer. Fear not, your long wait is over. Not only do I have two recipes that use canned clams, they are also scaled to feed just two people. Around here, we call that a double whammy and as such, they both deserve to be included in our Table for Two recipe collection. Both recipes are fast and simple to execute and, despite their use of canned clams and broth, they both produce a great family meal that I know your crew will enjoy. If you find either dish lacking in flavor or substance, you can, of course, add more garlic or another can of clams, but I think you'll be pleased with the results if you follow the recipes exactly as they are written. I do hope you'll take your can opener in hand and give one or both of them a try. Here is how they are made.

New England Clam Chowder...from the kitchen of One Perfect Bite courtesy of Cook's Illustrated

2 (6.5-ounce) cans minced clams
1 (8-ounce) bottle clam juice
Water , if necessary
2 slices thick-cut bacon (about 2 ounces), cut into 1/4-inch pieces
1/2 onion , chopped fine
1 clove minced garlic
1 tablespoon unbleached all-purpose flour
2 large red potatoes (about 3/4 pound), scrubbed and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1 large bay leaf
1/2 teaspoon fresh thyme or 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
1/2 - 3/4 cup heavy cream
1 tablespoon minced fresh parsley leaves

1) Drain clams, reserving juices. Add bottled clam juice to reserved clam juice to measure 2-1/2 cups (if short, add enough water to make up difference).
2) Cook bacon in a medium, heavy-bottomed saucepan over medium-high heat until beginning to crisp, about 5 minutes. Stir in onion and cook until onion has softened and bacon is crisp, about 5 minutes.
3) Stir in garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Stir in flour and coat vegetables, about 1 minute. Gradually whisk in clam broth. Stir in potatoes, bay leaf, and thyme. Bring to a simmer and cook until potatoes are tender, about 15 to 20 minutes.
4) Stir in clams, cream, and parsley. Return to a simmer briefly, then remove from heat. Discard bay leaf, and season with salt and pepper to taste. Yield: 2 servings.

Photo Courtesy of A Daily Apple

White Clam Sauce...from the kitchen of One Perfect Bite courtesy of The New York Times

1/4-cup butter
1 large clove garlic, finely chopped
2 tablespoons flour
2 cups clam juice, fresh or canned
1/4 cup chopped parsley
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1 1/2 teaspoons dried thyme leaves
2 (6.5-oz.)cans minced clams, fresh or canned

1) In a saucepan heat butter, add garlic and cook one minute over moderate heat. With a wire whisk stir in flour. Add clam juice, while stirring.
2)Add parsley, salt, pepper and thyme and simmer gently ten minutes. Add minced clams and heat through. Serve over linguine or spaghetti. Yield: 2-1/2 cups.

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Ginny said...

Looks yummy. It is just as much fun for me to look through your thumbnails at the bottom as it is to see the new recipe! Tonight I printed the tortellini with spinach and Parmesan.

Big Dude said...

I knew you could come up with something delicious.

David said...

Mary, Thanks for the recupe ideas! We've seen clams in a can but we've never even thought about the possibility buying some. Closed minds I guess... Take Care, Big Daddy Dave

Patricia @ ButterYum said...

That's one ingredient I don't believe I've ever purchased, but you've convinced me to give them a try. Thanks!

Jamie said...

I love clams!!! But in France we get them fresh... not in jars or canned. I wonder if they even sell them this way here? But ooh I love both clam chowder and white clam sauce over linguine (do you know I had totally forgotten that my mom used to make it when I was a kid and it was a favorite meal!). I should really make both of these!

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