#food #Knights #clams
“Clams are reflective of the area harvested from, just like oysters”–Paul Ebeling
Clams are briny, a big clam is not only a mouthful of clam, is a mouthful of seawater, that is what makes them distinct and delicious.
Knights like the hard shell clams that grow up and down the eastern seaboard of North America: littlenecks, cherrystones, middlenecks, chowder, quahogs. The are all the same species, harvested at different stages of life. It’s just size and age, the bigger they get, the more chew they have.
The different sizes have different uses and applications. Littlenecks are commonly served in pastas, like linguine with clams, or raw. We prefers to use larger topnecks or middlenecks with a bit of lemon juice and a good spicy horseradish for raw clams. If you are going to eat it raw, you should know you have a clam in your mouth: Littlenecks are not as satisfying.
Knights’ rule of thumb for these sorts of clams is that if it is bigger than the circle made in your hand when you touch your thumb and index finger together it is too big to eat raw, so, grilled, or broiled meat on its own is best.
Cherrystones are best chopped up, added to chowder. Slightly different from an Italian American-style baked clam, New England stuffies are made by shucking the clam raw, saving the juice, chopping up the meat, and blending it with lots of bread and other aromatics, baking it until hot, and finishing it under the broiler.
Chowder clams and quahogs are the next 2 sizes up. Neither are very common outside of the Northeast unless foraging on your own. Both are good for the same applications as cherrystones, but it’s a lot of clam and a very big shell.
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