Saturday, June 13, 2009

Garlicky Baby Clams

I'm certain most of you know to never eat a closed clam. Apparently my father never got the memo. Years ago we were at our favorite seafood restaurant, my father and I had ordered a large bucket of steamed clams. As we dipped our bread into the delicious garlicky sauce, one last closed clam was discovered sitting at the bottom, perfectly happy to be left alone. My father immediately scooped out the clam and began prying it open with his butter knife. He was so pleased with himself as the clam finally opened up and he popped that sucker right into his mouth. " No need for it to go to waste.." he exclaimed as he dabbed the garlic sauce off his mouth. We sopped up the remaining sauce, gobbling up an entire loaf of bread with a cheap carafe of white wine and called it a night. Fast forward several hours...not pretty. He wrote off the restaurant for years, never admitting that opening up that lonely clam was really a dumb idea.

In the summer time I love to put out a large bowl of steamed baby clams and watch my friends dig in with their hands. Its a messy operation, but oh so delicious. Its a simple appetizer for a large crowd. An easy rule of thumb so you don't end up hating your favorite restaurant for all the wrong reasons, throw out any clams that don't open or are broken.

  • 2 Tb butter

  • 2 pounds of baby clams

  • 1/3 cup of white wine

  • 4 cloves of garlic minced

  • juice of 1 lemon

  • 4 Tb chopped flat leaf parsley

  • Ground pepper

In a large skillet heat butter and add minced garlic. When garlic turns slightly golden add wine and clams. Increase heat and cover. This will take about 7 to 9 minutes. Shake the pan a few times during the cooking process. Remove clams and place in large bowl. Add lemon juice to cooking broth, reduce for 2 minutes. Mix in chopped parsley and pepper. Pour sauce over clams and serve with good crusty bread.


  1. THanks so much for stopping by, and please come again. So happy to find your site--everything looks so great! Love the clams (too bad my husband is allergic to shellfish)!

  2. I love clams but have only fixed them once to make clam chowder. Living in the Pacific Northwest you would think I would be more adventurous and try it!

  3. This sounds delicious -- I'm headed to the seafood market right now! But since I have both fingerling potatoes and asiago in my fridge right now, I think I'll make your twice baked apps. i have a feeling everyone will love them.
    I've had a good time looking through your blog and I'm so glad you've found mine (I'm Kath-what's for dinner tonight) Thanks for commenting--

  4. Haven't had baby clams in forever! I agree, they are oh so delicious. Nice share, thanks.

  5. Great recipe for baby clams! I have actually never cooked any kinds of clams at home, I really need to fix that!

  6. excellent classic dish! It never fails,...

  7. Thanks for sharing. I love seafood and will try your recipe soon. -Tien

  8. Dear Harper,
    Could you email me at I had a question to ask you but did not want to post. Thanks for visiting my site.


  9. These sound soo good! My family is crazy for clams...thanks for visiting my blog! You have some great sounding stuff on here!

  10. Yep..I am pretty sure that lonely little closed clam is pretty much telling us.."I am gross and nasty and if you eat me you will be puking for days, so dont eat me"!!!LOL
    Thanks for stopping by my blog