Smokey Clam Dip with Giants Chips

Chips and dip… you have to have chips and dip on the table. Around here I’ve been making a creamy clam dip that puts just the right amount of smokey goodness into the traditional tangy clam dip.

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • two 6 1/2-ounce cans minced clams, drained, reserving 3 tablespoons liquid
  • 1/3 cup finely chopped red bell pepper
  • 1 shallot, minced
  • 1 tablespoons paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon liquid smoke
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne

In a bowl whisk together cream cheese and sour cream until smooth. Stir in remaining ingredients and salt to taste.  Nice, simple, straight forward… and you could top this with snipped scallion greens and bacon-bits… As you all may know, I like to make my own bacon bits with a rasher or two of thick cut bacon from Western Beef.

Everything’s better with bacon.

Serve this with toasted pita wedges, what we call Giant’s chips around game-day.

Linguini with White Clam Sauce

I don’t think that there is anything more quintessential ‘coastal’ like fresh clams right out of the bay. If you have clammers on a bay… you’ve got coastal living. Here on long island, I find the best clams come from the Great South Bay region. The Great South Bay runs from Babylon to Brookhaven and all along the way there at markets carrying clams.

So this recipe calls for about two dozen clams chopped up. This would be about two of three cans of clams to those of you who may not have access to fresh local clams.

  •  2 cans clams, minced or chopped, with liquid (2 dozen fresh clams)
  • 1 lb. linguine, cooked al dente
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 3 or 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 c. white wine
  • 1 tbsp. parsley flakes
  • 1 tsp. oregano
  • 1 tsp. sweet basil
  • Seal salt and pepper

Heat oil in skillet and simmer with onion and garlic until golden. Add clams, wine and seasonings, and simmer 5 minutes. Pour sauce over cooked linguine. Now, I don’t really drain or rinse off the linguini before putting to sauce on. I think that the more starch you leave on the pasta the Life doesn’t get much simpler… but…

I tend to whisk in a two or three table spoons of fresh grated Romano cheese. Nothing says Italian like fresh grated Romano.

If you have the option of getting fresh clams, pick up an extra dozen. Steam these clams open. Then use these clams to ring the serving bowls, and the linguini. Then, pour the sauce over the pasta. Nothing says Long Island like fresh steamed Clams.