Fried Clams with Gaahlicky Blue Cheese Dip

about 4 to 6 servings
  • 3 quarts vegetable oil
  • 1 cup yellow cornmeal
  • 1 tablespoon Essence, recipe follows
  • 3 dozen soft-shelled clams, such as Ipswich, shelled and cleaned
  • 10 lemon wedges
  • Gaahlicky Blue Cheese Dip, recipe follows
  • Heat the oil in a large pot or Dutch oven over high heat to 360 degrees F.

  • In a shallow bowl, combine the cornmeal and Essence. Add the clams and toss to coat evenly, shaking to remove any excess.

  • In batches without crowding, deep-fry the clams, turning frequently, until golden brown, about 2 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer to paper towels to drain.

  • Serve hot with lemon wedges and Gaahlicky Blue Cheese Dip.

  • 2 1/2 tablespoons paprika

  • 2 tablespoons salt

  • 2 tablespoons garlic powder

  • 1 tablespoon black pepper

  • 1 tablespoon onion powder

  • 1 tablespoon cayenne pepper

  • 1 tablespoon dried leaf oregano

  • 1 tablespoon dried thyme

  • Combine all ingredients thoroughly. Store in an airtight jar or container.

  • Yield: about 2/3 cup

  • Recipe from New New Orleans Cooking by Emeril Lagasse and Jessie Tirsch

  • Published by William and Morrow, 1993.

Gaahlicky Blue Cheese Dip:
  • 1 cup sour cream

  • 1/2 cup heavy cream

  • 1/4 cup finely chopped yellow onions

  • 2 tablespoons minced garlic

  • 8 ounces blue cheese, crumbled

  • 2 teaspoons hot sauce, or to taste

  • 1 teaspoon salt

  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne

  • In a large bowl, combine all ingredients and beat with an electric mixer until well blended.

  • Transfer to a serving bowl, cover and chill at least 1 hour and up to 2 days before serving.

  • Yield: about 2 cups

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