- 3 gal littleneck clams in shell
- Â Â (abt 7 pints, canned)
- Â Â Extra virgin olive oil as needed
- Â Â Half-pint canning jars
- Â Â Pressure canner
- Â Â Smoker (such as a Little Chief)
- Â Â Smoking chips
- Gather about 4 gallons of littleneck clams. Keep them in salt water for a couple of days, changing the water every day.
- Place them on a grill or possibly barbecue and cook till they open. This tends to make your barbecue a bit messy. Remove meat.
- Or possibly, place the clams in a large pot 1/4 full of boiling water and steam them open. Remove meat.
- The mesh, or possibly gap, on the racks of the smoker needs to be small sufficient which the clams cannot fall through. Some people use stainless steel or possibly aluminum screens. Others simply cover the racks with aluminum foil and punch holes through it.
- Place clams fairly densely on racks. Use your favorite smoking chip (we use alder) and smoke for 1 to 2 hrs. One hour gives a very light smoke flavor. The clams are already cooked, this step is simply to add in flavor. Don't over smoke or possibly the clams will dry out and become chewy.
- Get out the instructions for your pressure canner. Place smoked clams in canning jars (we find 1/2-pint jars work best) and cover with a vegetable oil (we use extra virgin olive oil). Place the caps on and then pressure can according to the instructions on your canner. Remove from canner and enjoy. The smoked flavor of the clams intensifies as the jars age.
- These clams should be moist and smoky. They can be used as appetizers on crackers, in poultry dressings, or possibly in soups such as split pea or possibly clam chowder.
- Caution: Remember, Paralytic Shellfish Poisoning (PSP) is always a concern whenever you eat wild harvested clams or possibly mussels.
- Description: "May is generally considered the last best chance to gather clams, and the first week of the month has some great clamming tides."