Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Grilled Clams with Lemon-Parsley Butter

We have a delivery on Corcoran Street!! The magical storks at delivered my brand new 22.5 inch bundle of joy. It is the apple of this proud mama's eye and I couldn’t be happier.

This Father’s Day, the world’s most amazing father journeyed to DC with my mom and g-mom to help put my new grill to the test. I’ll share all the treats we made, but this one was my favorite. This is certainly not the easiest way to make clams. You can make them in 5 minutes like this, but throwing them on the grill until they open up and dotting them with lightly herbed butter before devouring them was more fun than I thought it would be. They each cook individually to perfection and you just pop them off the grill to a waiting bowl and bring them to the table. I think this works best as an appetizer for about 4-6 people, but you can certainly up the amount of clams if you want more. Honestly, I probably wouldn't go to all the trouble of firing up a charcoal grill just for these, since they only take about 5 minutes to cook. I was already making other grilled items, so popping these on the grill during down-time was easy.

Grilled Clams with Lemon-Parsley Butter
2 lbs. Littleneck clams
1/2 stick butter
2 T chopped parsley (or any combo of herbs you like)
1 lemon
1/4 tsp. pepper

1. Rinse the clams and discard any cracked or open clams. You want to keep them on ice and in the fridge until you are ready to use them. Don’t leave them submerged in water or they will drown.
2. Combine very soft butter with finely chopped parsley, pepper, and the zest of a lemon.
3. Quarter the lemon for squeezing over the clams once they are cooked.
4. Heat up your grill and place the clams directly on the grates. Resist the urge to feel involved by moving the clams around.
They will open up in 4-5 minutes on their own and you can use your tongs to remove each clam individually. If you keep moving them around, all the yummy clam juice will spill out.
5. Once they are safely in the bowl, dot each opened clam with a small amount of the butter (1/4 to 1/2 tsp. should do it). There will be butter leftover, but it is wonderful spread on toast.
6. Squeeze with some lemon and serve up.

Sitting together around a table, picking at seafood is one of my most nostalgic and fondest family memories. Whenever we get to do it now, I am reminded that I happen to have the loveliest and most encouraging family that a girl could ask for. Lucky me!

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