Category Archives: razor clams

Razor Clam Ceviche

The second annual Razor Clam Hootenanny, in association with the Bainbridge Island Parks & Rec outdoor program, was a huge success. Twenty eager students gathered last weekend at a sprawling house on Mockrocks Beach to dig clams and feast on the bounty. Because of the spring tide change, we were able to bookend an evening dig on Saturday with a Sunday morning dig for maximum limit action. Many of us nabbed clams on Friday evening as well. A three-dig limit of 45 mossbacks makes for a full bag o’ clams!

The digging on Saturday evening was a little more challenging than either Friday evening or Sunday morning. Heavy surf meant the clams weren’t showing like usual, and regular rogue waves had clammers scrambling for high ground. Still, we got our clams, and some of us learned that it’s not always like shooting tuna in a can. I welcome these tough conditions because they force the clammer to hone her abilities and develop a sharp eye for even the most cryptic of shows.

Saturday night’s feast was epic, with two varieties of New England Clam Chowder (one, my grandmother’s recipe, with bacon, thyme, and a thin milky broth; the other thick and creamy with celery); a ceviche with razors, cod, and shrimp; panko-fried razors; and a hearty Pasta alle Vongole. We had the kind folks from Treveri Cellars on hand pouring their excellent bubbly and John Adams of Sound Fresh Clams & Oysters was shuckin’ and jivin’ as he produced platter after platter of Skookum Point Olys, Kumamotos, and Pacific oysters.

It was a boisterous, fun-loving crowd, and the pre-dawn wake-up call for one more dig on Sunday morning was not without its difficulties.

***

While in New York City recently I had a good meal at a new place in Soho called Charlie Bird. One of the standouts was a razor clam ceviche. The Atlantic razor clamEnsis directus, is very different in appearance from our beefy West Coast variety, Siliqua patula, and more deserving of the name. They’re smaller, and quite long and thin—like the straight razor of old. The ceviche came prepared on several clam shells. It was unmixed, with each ingredient—pickled peppers, onion, and so on—in colorful little piles. You were meant to slurp it all together in one bite like an oyster.

Such a presentation is difficult with our big local razors (see top photo), since it’s more than a mouthful, but there’s no reason why we can’t use the shell as a serving dish, or even mix up the ingredients at table right in the shell.

 

I don’t see West Coast razors as ceviche often, whereas it seems to be all the rage right now on the East Coast. Maybe this is because of the presence of domoic acid, a naturally occurring marine toxin in the Pacific (and the inspiration for Hitchcock’s The Birds) that can cause shellfish amnesiac poisoning and even death in high doses. The thing is, this toxin can’t be cooked out of razor clams, so there’s no difference between fried razors and ceviche with regard to domoic acid. Thankfully, state fish & wildlife departments carefully monitor the health of our shellfish.

This recipe is Japan Goes South of the Border. I use only the clam siphons as I prefer to save my diggers (the razor clam’s tender foot) for fried clams; besides, the siphon has a snappiness that’s perfect for ceviche. The amounts below are estimates; depends on the size of your clams and vegetables, and besides, with a little common sense it shouldn’t be too hard to figure out the right proportions. You can easily halve it for a smaller batch.

1 dozen razor clam siphons, cleaned and diced
2-3 cloves garlic, diced
1 small red pepper, diced
2-3 jalapeño peppers, diced
1/2 small red onion, diced
large handful cilantro, chopped
2 limes
aji-mirin
rice vinegar
tortillas, warmed
avocado, sliced
salt and pepper

1. Squeeze limes and mix juice with diced razor clams and garlic in a small non-reactive bowl. Season with salt and pepper plus a good splash of aji-mirin to taste and set aside. A general rule of thumb for ceviche is 1/2 cup citrus juice per pound of fish.

2. Cover diced red onion with rice vinegar and set aside. Chop together jalapeño pepper and cilantro if presenting ceviche unmixed.

3. Refrigerate at least an hour, preferably several hours.

4. Serve, mixed or unmixed, in razor clam shells or a small bowl with warm tortillas and avocado. Serves 4.

I have to say, this was easily one of the best ceviches I’ve ever had. Razor clams have a pleasing al dente texture. Steeped in the acidic lime juice, their flavor mellows, and aji-mirin adds a perfect finish. I’ll be making razor clam ceviche after every dig from now on.

Razor’s Edge

One of the great pleasures of my foraging workshops is seeing the moment of recognition: that instant when a student uncovers nature’s banquet for the first time. Such moments were repeated many times over this past weekend on Washington’s storm-tossed ocean beaches, as fifteen of us plied the razor clam flats.

I can’t remember back-to-back digs of such abundance. The shows were everywhere, the clams of good size, with a few mossbacks in the mix (clams old and big enough to have dark mottling on the shell and a greenish hue). I managed several approaching six inches, including one just a hair under at 5 7/8. A Pacific razor clam of that length has more meat on it than a quail.

I had to keep explaining to everyone that it wasn’t usually this easy. The sun was out; on Saturday clammers were even walking the beach in t-shirts; and the clams were begging for discovery, with dozens of shows in an area not much larger than a bath tub!

This was my first razor clam class. We rented a house at Seabrook near Pacific Beach for two nights so we could get in two digs and cook up a feast with our catch. The menu included Fried Razor Clams, Razor Clam Chowder, and Pasta alle Vongole, among many other treats.

Digging razor clams is pure fun—and the meal that awaits ain’t bad either. When I got my haul home and fully processed, I decided to try something new. The clam’s siphon has a texture similar to the mantle of a squid, while the foot—or digger, as it’s known—is considerably more tender. A quick stir-fry with some veggies seemed like a worthy departure from the tried-and-true comfort recipes, and it was.

Chinese Stir-fried Razor Clams

1 cup razor clams, cut into 2-inch strips
1 small red bell pepper, cut to match clams
3 – 4 celery stalks, cut to match clams
2 green onions, thinly sliced
1 tbsp ginger, fine dice
1 tbsp garlic, fine dice
2 tbsp peanut oil
2 tbsp sambal olek (pickled chili sauce) *

Marinade
1 1/2 tsp Chinese rice wine (or dry sherry)
1/2 tsp salt

Sauce
1 1/2 tsp white sugar
2 tsp Chinese black vinegar *
1 tsp Chinese rice wine (or dry sherry)
1 1/2 tsp corn starch
3 tbsp chicken stock

 available at most Asian markets and some conventional grocers

1. In a bowl, combine clams with marinade and set aside.

2. Whisk together sauce ingredients in a small bowl.

3. In a wok or large saute pan, heat oil over medium-high heat until not quite smoking. Add sambal olek and stir vigorously, 30 seconds. Add ginger and garlic, continuing to stir until fragrant, about a minute.

4. Add sweet red pepper, celery, and clams. Stir thoroughly, coating with red oil, about 2 minutes. Add sliced green onions. Give sauce a stir and add to wok. Stir well another minute and serve immediately with rice.

A Forager’s Thanksgiving

Here in the Pacific Northwest, we’re lucky to have a climate that allows for foraging year-round, even during the dark, wet days of late fall and winter. If you’re hoping to include a few wild foods in your Thanksgiving feast, keep reading…

Wild Mushrooms

By late November, those of us in Washington need to think more strategically about our mushroom hunting spots. The bread-and-butter golden chanterelle harvest is mostly done by this time, the surviving specimens oversized, floppy, and waterlogged. Skiers own the mountains now and even many low-elevation habitats should be ruled out because of recurring hard frosts. Head for the coast or the southern Olympic Peninsula and look for microclimates where fungi can persist. Search out those hardier winter species such as yellowfoot chanterelles and hedgehogs. Hint: they prefer moist, mossy forests and plenty of woody decay.

If you’re willing to travel, make tracks for southwestern Oregon where kings and matsutake are still available. My favorite this time of year, though, is the black trumpet, which is just starting to fruit and can be found in mixed forests with oak. Sautéed in a little butter, it tastes just like fall.

Shellfish

We’re coming into the high time for shellfish. The summer spawn is over and the clams, mussels, oysters, and crabs are putting meat back in their shells, rather than using their fat reserves for reproduction.

Many a Nor’westerner likes to give a regional twist to the Turkey Day dinner, including a shellfish course of soup or stew, or simply a mess of Dungeness crabs on the table to kick off the proceedings. I try to dive for my crabs when I can, though the seafood market is a dry alternative. One year I made a Dungie crab bisque for twenty. It was time-consuming peeling all that crab—I’d recommend shelling out (pardon the pun) for lump crab meat instead—but oh so decadent and delicious. Unfortunately, by the time the labor-intensive bisque was ready, I think many of us were too deep into a Northwest wine tasting to fully appreciate it.

An elegant, tomato-based shellfish stew in the Italian tradition is a great way to charm your guests and add European flair to the American meal. I make one chock full of clams, mussels, shrimp, scallops, and squid (note: Seattle’s public fishing pier is host to a multi-lingual party of midnight squidders this time of year that is not to be missed). You can find my shellfish stew recipe in Fat of the Land. Or try a simple New England-style Clam Chowder, of which I have a couple recipes, here and here. Steamed littleneck clams can be easily gathered and prepared in minutes. A splash of white with a few sprigs of parsley and couple smashed garlic cloves is all it takes, or you can add a bit more prep time for Clams with Herbed Wine Sauce. Don’t forget crusty bread for dipping.

The South Sound and Hood Canal are good options for digging littleneck clams and picking oysters, while razor clam digs on the sandy ocean beaches are a time-honored way to stock the larder. In Oregon, Tillamook and Netarts bays are popular with clam diggers. Check the state Fish & Wildlife web sites for information on beach openings and limits.

Greens

Some of our spring weeds reappear in fall with the cool weather. One of the better bets is wild watercress, which can be gathered in quantity and tastes so much better than its domesticated counterpart. Spice up your green salad with watercress, pair it with wild mushrooms in a stuffing, or make a soup or side dish with it.

Berries

We’re lucky to have a dozen varieties of huckleberry in Washington and Oregon. Our late ripening variety is the evergreen huckleberry, Vaccinium ovatum, and it’s often available right around Thanksgiving. Of all the huckleberries, it’s one of the easiest to pick, with sweet berries that can be pulled off the branches in bunches, so get your fill, though be warned: as with our fall mushrooms, this is not a good evergreen huckleberry year. Should you find some, there’s nothing better than a huckleberry pie or cobbler to put an exclamation mark on a wild Thanksgiving meal.

Razor Clam Linguini

It’s been nearly a year since my last razor clam dig. I missed all the nighttime fall digs. Last weekend marked that point in the calendar and tide table when the digs switch over to morning, and on Sunday the moon was kind enough to give us a 9:30 a.m. low tide, which meant a leisurely breakfast in camp after a night of wine and whiskey.

I was with my friends the Coras, immortalized in the morel chapter of Fat of the Land, and had my daughter Ruby in tow. We hit the beach south of Twin Harbors State Park an hour before the turn, bundled up against a cold wind and ready to bag some razors.

The shows on this morning were fairly cryptic. I saw a lot of clammers pacing the flats with near-empty mesh bags. The key was in recognizing even the slightest hint of a show, sometimes no more than the smallest suggestion of a dimple in the sand. Most times, even when I doubted my eyes, I came away with a clam for the effort.

The problem in these conditions is gauging the size of the clams; it was virtually impossible with such minimalist shows. My clams varied widely in stature, though I managed to get a few nice ones, along with more than a fair share that were just average. It’s shaping up to be a year of average size from what I’ve been hearing. Who knows why. Could be ocean conditions, food supply, naturally occurring toxins in the water impeding growth. Or maybe it’s just a cyclical thing. I didn’t see a single six-incher.

Ruby did yeoman’s work reaching into the holes to capture fleeing razors before they dug themselves to freedom. At one point a wave came in and caught me mid-pull. I could only watch as wet sand leaked from my gun and the golden flash of a razor slipped out and into the current. Well, that’s not entirely true. I lunged after it, and knocked Ruby over in the process. Even though her fashionable little rubber boots with tattoos of skulls and hearts filled instantly with cold water, we both scrambled after the clam as if dinner depended on it. The razor bobbed up in the surf and then went under again. We knee-walked after it, stabbing at the water with our hands. When I came up with the razor after another mad dash in the waves Ruby cheered. Then she realized she was soaked. End of dig for Ruby.

We got her dried off and comfortable in the van and then I went back out and got my limit. The Coras got their limits soon after, and just like that, game over. Even on the more challenging days the clamming always seems to go by too quickly.

Back home we cleaned our catch and decided a razor clam pasta would be the blue plate special of the day. I’m a huge fan of Pasta alle Vongole. This dish is similar, but because razors need to be exhumed from their shells and cleaned before cooking, you don’t get that bonus liquor that makes instant sauce as with hardshell clams. West Coast razors, of course, make up for this shortcoming with unparalleled flavor. I added chopped tomatoes to buttress the sauce. Freshly made pasta is best.

1 1/2 cups razor clams, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
10 oz linguini
1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup olive oil
1 cup onion, diced
4-5 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup white wine
2 cups tomatoes, diced
1 tbsp oregano, chopped (optional)
1 cup parsley, chopped
2 tbsp basil, chopped (optional)
saffron or red pepper flakes (optional)
1/3 cup parmesan, grated

1. In a large sauce pan, sweat the onions and garlic over medium heat in the butter and olive oil. Add wine (I added several strands of saffron to wine half an hour beforehand) and cook for a few minutes, then add tomatoes and oregano and simmer 10 – 15 minutes. If sauce gets too thick, add a splash of water.

2. If using fresh pasta, add the razor clams to sauce when adding pasta to boil; if dried, wait until pasta is half-cooked. The razors only need a few minutes of cooking.

3. Drain and toss pasta in a large bowl with sauce, parsley, and any other herbs. Serve with parmesan.

Geoduck Recipes

I came into a geoduck windfall the other day. A photo team was in town to shoot some clam digging action, and to supplement the razors and littlenecks we dug at the beach, they picked up a few photogenic ‘ducks from the market.

By the end of the weekend I was in proud possession of four live geoducks. What to do? If morels were popping (they’re not), I’d consider my Sichuan surf ‘n’ turf, or maybe a ceviche for a sunny Seattle picnic in March (good luck!). So I poked around online. Xinh Dwelley of Xinh’s Clam & Oyster House in Shelton, WA, makes a star turn on Dirty Jobs to demonstrate how to prepare Geoduck Sashimi, perhaps my favorite way to enjoy the well-endowed mollusk. Simply adorned with a dipping sauce of one part soy, one part rice vinegar, and a generous pinch of minced ginger, the clam’s sweet, slightly metallic taste shines through. Another good source for geoduck inspiration can be found here.

Even with various friends on the dole, four ‘ducks was just too much clam for three meals. We ended up freezing a couple. The necks of the other two got eaten as sashimi and the body meat was stir-fried for Geoduck with Snow Peas and Cashews. That night we also fried up some razor clams Pan-Asian style with a reduction of sake, aji-mirin, garlic, and ginger.

I sure don’t mind these clammy days of spring.

Go for the Gold

This past Sunday I was faced with a tough choice: catch the last two periods of the gold-medal hockey game between the U.S. and Canada or go for the golden razor clam. I went for the gold. It’s almost always better to be a participant rather than an observer, don’t you think? Unless we’re talking about alligator rasslin’ or something.

So far this season I had been shut out of razor clam openings because of scheduling conflicts. My luck was about to change. It was a perfect afternoon for a dig: partly cloudy with sunbursts, not too windy, low tide at 6:30 pm. Really, it doesn’t get much better than that, not on the storm-swept shores of the North Pacific. By 4:30 the beaches started crowding with people, though not excessively so. It was still mild outside and some of the bolder clammers wore nothing but shorts and t-shirts. My friends Chris and Lori, who star in the morel hunting chapter of the book, set off down the beach with faithful hound Buddha.

Meanwhile surf clamming specialists collected first dibs as the rest of us waited for the tide to drop. This is something I want to learn, mainly because it looks so ballsy to be out there in the foam and spray digging beneath a foot or two of water. How do they even locate the shows? I don’t know but there must be some secret shared by the confederacy of surf diggers. Unfortunately I forgot to get a picture of any of them. Maybe they don’t even show up on film.

The rest of us used our clam guns (shovels and tubes) to score a few early clams while waiting for the drop. Then, all of sudden, the out-going tide exposed the honey holes. Shows appeared all around. Crazed digging and lots of “Over there!” and “Right behind you!” exhortations. Limits filled in minutes. It was a good crop, with many decent-sized razors and easy digging. Virtually everyone had a limit before the turn.

As I walked back to the van a line of cars and trucks sped past on the hardpan beach, people hanging out of open windows yelling and hollering and generally whooping it up. “Waaaahhhhoooooo!” a long-haired freak zinged me as his buddies hauled him away from the beach in an old Dodge wagon gone to rust. They probably had a hundred razors between them. I flashed him the thumbs-up as he rolled off down the flats. It bears repeating that human beings enjoy getting their own food from places other than the supermarket. Another gift from the sea had been gladly accepted and it was time to party.

Tempura Razor Clam Sushi

If you’ve spent any quality time in Jamaica, then rolling sushi ought to be second nature. If not, just practice. A bamboo roller makes it easier. How you cook the rice is key. Make sure you use sushi-grade short-grain rice and rinse it in a few changes of water before cooking. The rice should spread smoothly on a sheet of nori without becoming too gloppy.

While the rice is cooking, prep and arrange your ingredients. I’ve used all kinds of fish, fresh vegetables, Asian-style pickled vegetables, and other flavors and textures. The following are examples, but experiment on your own. Tempura is fun because it adds a little crunch to your sushi and a hit of that fatty goodness that only fried foods can give.

4-5 razor clams, cut in half lengthwise
tempura batter (here’s a recipe)
2 cups sushi rice
seasoned rice vinegar
1 package nori
Dungeness crabmeat or other fish or shellfish*
1 small jar tobiko
1/2 cucumber
1 avocado
pickled ginger
wasabi
soy sauce

* Note: As you can see from the photos, I used fake crab, known as surimi, but subsequent review of the Sustainable Sushi web site reveals that surimi is no longer considered a viable option for the sushi lover. On the other hand, Seafood Watch’s Sustainable Fish Guide application for the iPhone calls it a “good alternative.” This is confusing and should be sorted out.

1. Make rice. When cooked, mix in a splash of seasoned rice vinegar to taste.
2. Peel and slice cucumber into matchsticks. Cut avocado into thin slices.
3. Batter razor clams and fry in oil. Remove to paper towels.
4. Spread rice evenly on nori wrapper. Repeatedly wetting fingers in a dipping bowl makes this easier.
5. Arrange ingredients and roll. For an inside-out roll, flip rice-covered wrapper onto wax paper, rice side down.

Itadakimas!

Turns out my Canadian friends got to revel in their medal victory. But I had my own gold. We grabbed a few pints at the Porthole Pub in Ocean Shores and then made tracks back to Seattle, Winterland ’73 cranked in Cora’s hippie van. After enjoying a wonderful dinner recently at West Seattle’s Mashiko, one of only a handful of certified sustainable sushi restaurants in the world, I had ideas for my catch: Pacific Gold, a fine rolling sushi if there ever was one.

Nueva York Clam Dip


The powers that be have opened the fall/winter Washington razor clam season three weekends so far and I’ve missed them all. Good thing razors keep so well in the deep freeze. We’ve been busting out vacuum-sealed packets of last year’s catch to keep pace with the comfort needs of the season, and while nothing beats a piping hot chowder on a wintry day, this Big Apple recipe for clam dip with a decidedly south-of-the-border twist is a close second if you have any leftover clams. As a pairing with potato chips and beer on a snowbound day of football-watching, it’s just about perfect.

A single chipotle pepper in adobo sauce, minced, is enough to turn up the heat on what is ordinarily a fairly innocuous dip. Chopped cilantro, lime juice, and a garnish of festive red pepper and green scallions add extra zing. Otherwise it’s the clams that puts gas in the tank. I can’t remember where this recipe came from; now it’s just a yellowed newspaper clipping taped to an index card. Chances are I got this from relatives down in Arkansas, who, despite being landlocked, know their football and their clam dips. Put this out at your Superbowl party with a couple bags of good chips (mine are Cape Cod, Tim’s Cascade, or Kettle) and I guarantee you’ll be throwing flags as you watch your guests lick the bowl before half-time.

18 littleneck clams or 6 razor clams
1 can of Rainier (Miller High Life is acceptable)
4 slices bacon, chopped
3 tbsp onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
8 oz cream cheese, at room temperature
3 tbsp sour cream (or Mexican crema)
3 tbsp cilantro, chopped
Juice of half a lime
1 chipotle pepper in adobo sauce, minced
1/2 red pepper, diced
scallions, sliced for garnish
hot sauce to taste

1. With littleneck clams, steam open in beer, reserving 2 tablespoons of broth; if using frozen razor clams, thaw out and similarly save 2 tablespoons of liquor. Chop clams.

2. Fry bacon in skillet, then remove to paper towel with slotted spoon when crispy. Saute onion and garlic in bacon fat for a minute or two, then spoon into serving bowl. If using razor clams, saute in remaining fat for 5 minutes and add to bowl.

3. Whisk together softened cream cheese and sour cream in same bowl with clams, reserved clam juice, onions, garlic, bacon, cilantro, lime juice, chipotle pepper, half of diced red pepper, and a few dashes of hot sauce. Garnish with remaining diced red pepper and sliced scallions.

Yields about 2 cups.

Fried Razor Clams and Garlic Fries


To celebrate the tentative opening of one more razor clam dig this spring, I busted out some frozen razor feet the other night and whipped together an old favorite: Fried Razor Clams and Garlic Fries. Catch that? Fried and Fries. Those of us foraging in the outdoors and dining regularly on superfoods don’t worry about our occasional deepfry intake.

I’ve evangelized the golden razor clam before, back in the first days of this blog. Clamming for razors is a hoot, and eating them is…well…even hootier. But I neglected to supply a recipe (not that it’s culinary rocket science), so here’s an encore edition.

The foot of the razor clam, known as the digger, is the tenderest part. If I’m cooking frozen clams I’ll use a mallet to tenderize the clams, but the diggers don’t usually require such handling. For the batter I tried crackermeal instead of the standard breadcrumbs this time around, and while some folks swear by the cracker, I didn’t notice an appreciable difference. My main departure is to add cajun spices. On the East Coast many clammers prefer giving their clams a good soaking in milk, evaporated milk in particular, but I find that my defrosted razors are already swimming in an ambrosial bath of milky white clam juice. Whatever works for you.

Fried Razor Clams (for two):

1/2 cup milk optional
1 egg, beaten
1/4 cup flour
1/4 cup crackermeal or breadcrumbs
seasoning to taste

Mix the flour, crackermeal, and spices in a bowl. Dip the clams into the egg, then the batter, and move immediately to a pan of hot oil or butter. Fry until deep golden, a couple minutes a side. Remove to paper towels. Pretty simple. A squeeze of lemon and more cajun spices and you’re ready to eat. Cold beer is a must.

Hey Chowdah!


The rain is back. Time to make soup. (Really, just another excuse to chip away at the wall of vacuum-sealed razor clam bricks in my freezer…as if I needed an excuse.)

For both fish and clam chowders I hew closely to the classic New England recipe outlined by Mark Bittman in How to Cook Everything, although unlike Bittman, I prefer using a generous roux of melted butter and flour to thicken the chowder. That said, I’ll never go back to my earliest love of the whipped and creamy style so thick you can spread it on toast points, not since working in my youth at a Martha’s Vineyard restaurant famous for its chowder. Between us, that miraculous, float-a-cherry-on-top creaminess didn’t come from any particular technique or wizardry in the kitchen; it came from giant cans labeled “Chowder Base.”

I also like to slice the onions into wide half-moons and heap in a generous amount of thyme.

Razor Clam Chowder

2 cups chopped razor clams
4-5 strips of thick, quality bacon, diced
1 large onion, sliced into wide half-moons
2-3 cups peeled and cubed potato
3 tbsp butter
3 tbsp flour
1 quart chicken stock
1 pint heavy cream (or half and half)
1 tsp dried thyme
salt and pepper to taste

Sauté bacon in heavy pot, then remove with slotted spoon (or not). Sauté onions 1 minute in bacon fat, add potatoes and cook 10-15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove onion-potato mixture for later use. Melt butter and mix in flour to make roux. Slowly add stock over medium heat. Return onions and potatoes and simmer until potatoes are tender. Add thyme and seasonings. Slowly add cream and clams and cook over low heat. Serve piping hot, as my dad always says, with good bread.

Razor Clam Cakes


With another razor clam dig scheduled for early March, it’s time to put a dent in the freezer backlog. One of the few knocks against razor clams is that they toughen up once frozen. This problem can be solved by tenderizing the clams with a mallet or choosing recipes that work with previously frozen clams. I adapted this recipe from a posting I found on Chowhound, adding sauteed onions and red peppers to the mix. The food processor takes care of the tenderizing. Ingredients listed below are guidelines (I wasn’t really paying attention to amounts, and you can adjust easily to your own tastes). To the eye, the finished product looks like a standard crab cake—but you’ll be surprised by the intense clam flavor. For seafood lovers only.

1/2 heaping cup razor clams
1/2 small onion, diced
1/4 red pepper, diced
4 tbsp bread crumbs
1 egg
parsley
lemon
butter

1. Sauté the onion and pepper in butter.
2. Roughly chop clams and several sprigs of parsley in food processor.
3. Combine clam-parsley mix with sauteed vegetables, bread crumbs, and egg. Salt and pepper to taste. (I add a few sprinkles of Cajun’s Choice.)
4. Squeeze some lemon juice in the mixture and form into patties.
5. Fry quickly in butter.

Makes 4 small cakes. Serves 2 for dinner or 4 for appetizer.