This classic preparation is simply the best clam recipe ever. Whenever bacon and butter appear in the same recipe, you know you're in for a treat! Not only are clams casino an easy recipe to prepare, they can be made ahead of time and popped under the broiler whenever you're ready.
- 18 medium (about 2 1/2-inches) fresh Littleneck clams
- 2 Tbs. unsalted butter
- 3 strips center-cut bacon, each sliced into 6 equal pieces (18 total)
- 3 Tbs. finely diced red bell pepper
- 3 garlic cloves, finely minced
- 1/3 cup plain breadcrumbs
- 1 Tbs. finely grated Parmesan cheese
- 1/8 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
- Pinch of salt
- 2 Tbs. chopped flat-leaf parsley
- Lemon wedges
- Rock salt (as needed)
- Scrub the clams under cold running water until the shells are clean.
- Heat the butter in a large skillet over medium heat.
- Add the bacon and cook until not quite crisp. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the bacon to a plate lined with paper towels to drain and set aside.
- Add the red bell pepper to the bacon drippings in the skillet, and cook, stirring often, for 2 minutes.
- Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute more.
- Turn off the heat and stir in the breadcrumbs, Parmesan, black pepper, and salt. Reserve the mixture until needed.
- Add about 2 inches of water to a Dutch oven, or other heavy pot with a tight-fitting lid, and bring to a rapid boil over high heat.
- Add clams, cover, and cook for about 5 minutes, or just until the shells open.
- It's critical to remove and drain the clams as soon as they open.
- Allow the clams to cool until they can be handled
- Twist and pull the clam shells apart, and remove the clam.
- Place the clam back into the deeper of the two shell halves.
- Spread the rock salt over the bottom of a heatproof baking dish, and nestle the clams in the top of the salt, pressing in slightly
- Preheat the broiler to high.
- Divide the breadcrumb mixture evenly over the top of each clamshell, and top each with one piece of the bacon.
- Broil the clams, about 6 to 8 inches from the heat source, until the tops are browned and the edges of the bacon are crisp.
- Sprinkle the fresh parsley over the top, and serve hot with lemon wedges.
Recipe Notes and Tips
• Littlenecks clams are hard-shelled clams that are part of the quahog species. They are the smallest of clams, amounting to 7 to 10 per pound.
|Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)|