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Old 11-04-2008, 04:37 PM   #1
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Shucking uncooked littlenecks

I just made some pasta with clam sauce (white). I was going to shuck the littlenecks before cooking, but found it next to impossible. I put them in the freezer for 15 minutes, then took them out to stand, but they weren't very open. How do you shuck littlenecks before cooking them? I bought a clam knife, but it wouldn't fit, these shells were shut tight.

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Old 11-04-2008, 04:59 PM   #2
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its easy to show someone but hard to explain but let me give ti a shot.


go in from the corner. and use like the 4 fingers to hold he back of the blade and kidna push the clam up into it with the palm.

I had the same problem and dreaded when an order for them would come in. got the hang of it pretty fast.
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Old 11-04-2008, 05:48 PM   #3
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I wouldn't go to all that trouble for clam sauce. In fact, it's a waste. Just put them in a pan with a little water & steam them for just a couple of minutes. Then discard the shells & use the meat & the great broth you now have in your sauce.
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Old 11-04-2008, 05:55 PM   #4
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I would have to agree with Breezy on that.

I when making it would do the pasta thing add a can of baby clams in juice and throw in the little necks and steam them till open and serve. it does only take a few minutes.

I do under cook my pasta just a tad so it doesnt get mushy though
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Old 11-04-2008, 06:07 PM   #5
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I "cheat" when I make white clam sauce.

I use:

1 can (or jar) of commercial white clam sauce
1 can of chopped clams
3 cloves of garlic, peeled & chopped
small handful of flat-leaf Italian parsley, chopped
Extra virgin olive oil
dash of dry white wine
leftover steamed clams & broth from a previous meal
crushed red pepper flakes

I briefly saute the chopped garlic in a couple of dollops of olive oil - absolutely NO browning please!! Then add the canned clam sauce, canned clams, leftover clams & broth, & dash of wine. When heated through, add parsley & pepper flakes & serve over hot cooked linguini.

If you prefer a thicker, less brothy sauce, just add a few sprinkles of dry seasoned breadcrumbs to taste.
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Old 11-04-2008, 06:07 PM   #6
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You put them in a bowl of salt water, with about 2TBS of cornmeal.
They will open enough to get rid of any sand or smootz.
Rinse them and use your clam shucker knife at that point to get them out of the shell
Cook them with whatever sauce and you should have no problem.
If you want to serve the on open shell, just continue cooking after they open for a very breif time in the sauce and serve.
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