California Central Coast Recipes
Quick from the Pantry Stuffed Clams
Stuffed clams are always a great appetizer. When fresh clams are not available Quick from the Pantry Stuffed Clams is a low-cost appetizer that you can have on hand anytime when you need a good-tasting emergency appetizer. It uses canned minced clams that are readily (and inexpensively) available at most grocery stores. This recipe is almost as good as our more costly one that uses fresh clams--and is much quicker than the Stuffed Clams Central Coast Style
We like to serve these this appetizer in the prettier clam shell halves we save just for this purpose whenever we cook fresh clams. If you do not have some shells on hand, not to worry! You can simply cook as small mounds on a cookie sheet, or better yet in a shallow muffin style pan so they have a nice round shape when served.
The key to this dish is just the right consistency of the bread crumbs. They should not be too coarse or too fine. Also use the entire bread including the crust!
Finally, depending upon your mood, this is one of the few seafood recipes where the No Cheese on Seafood rule can be suspended. A little grated Parmesan Cheese on top goes very well.
Preparation time: 20 minutesCooking time: 15 minutes
1 ounce Bacon , diced
1 Tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1/2 cup White Onion , diced
1/2 teaspoons Dried Italian Seasoning
1/4 teaspoons Cayenne Pepper
1 Tablespoons Garlic minced
1/2 cup Dry White Wine
1/2 cup Clam Juice ,from minced clam can
1 Tablespoons Lemon Juice
1 6.5 oz Can Minced Clams
2 Tablespoons Chopped Roasted Red Pepper.
1 cup Fresh Bread Crumbs , coarse, using a firm Italian or French style bread.
2 Tablespoons Italian Parsley chopped
Salt and Pepper
Extra Virgin Olive Oil for drizzling.
Grated Parmesan Cheese
1 Preheat your oven to 375F.
2 In a large saute pan, saute the minced bacon in the olive oil over medium heat until the bacon is crisp. Add the chopped onion and continue to saute until the onion is soft and translucent. Add the garlic and Italian Seasoning and cook until just fragrant.
3 Add the wine, lemon juice and clam juice, turn up the heat to high and reduce the wine and clam juices by 1/3. When reduced, stir in the parsley, chopped red pepper, cayenne pepper and bread crumbs and remove form the heat. The bread crumb stuffing should be just moist and firm enough to hold together. Add a little extra white wine if too dry, or a little extra bread crumbs if too wet. Correct seasoning and add salt and pepper to taste.
4 If you are using clam shells, spoon an equal amount of the bread mixture on top of each clam half, lightly pressing just enough to stay in place. Drizzle a little extra virgin olive oil on top, or if using sprinkle a little of the grated Parmesan Cheese on top.
5 If you are using a cookie sheet or muffin pan, lightly coat the sheet or pan with olive oil. Spoon an equal amount of the bread mixture as small mounds (about 3" diameter) by lightly pressing just enough to stay in place. Drizzle a little extra virgin olive oil on top, or if using sprinkle a little of the grated Parmesan Cheese on top.
6 Place the clams in the preheated oven and bake for 10 to 15 minutes --just long enough to lightly brown the stuffing.
7 Serve immediately.
This appetizer is very wine friendly and will pair with either a red or a dry white wine. For a white selection, we like to serve with a chilled Rhone style Marsanne. For a red, a young Rhone style Syrah or a young Paso Robles Zinfandel.