Category Archives: clams

Old Bay Pasta with Smoked Clams

I came home from work today so hungry that I wasn’t hungry anymore.I didn’t want to roast vegetables because I knew that would take a long, didn’t want to make rice for the same reason, and didn’t want to thaw any meat.

I knew I wanted to delve into the smoked clams Santa gave me in my stocking.  I love clams.  I started eating them a few years ago because they are extremely high in iron.  The smoked ones in cottonseed oil are beyond the best!

Anyway, I settled on pasta because fresh pasta is usually pretty quick.  Over New Year’s I bought a pasta cookbook at a secondhand store.  It’s pretty has something like 127 fresh pasta recipes.  I came across one which intrigued me – Old Bay pasta.  Normally, I couldn’t care less about Old Bay seasoning.  However, when I moved out of my apartment in Milwaukee I hoarded all the food left behind.  One item was a full carton of Old Bay.  I’ve never used it….until tonight!  The only thing I knew was that the seasoning went well with seafood so I figured I’d give it a shot.  The recipe also called for orange juice, so I was pretty excited for this.  The result?  Surprisingly good.  The strongest flavors in the pasta were the celery salt and orange juice.  As weird as it may sound, it worked.  To go along with the pasta I boiled diced carrots, potato, and garlic in the cooking water.  Since the pasta was made with a tablespoon of Old Bay, no seasoning was needed.  For sauce, I just used the oil from the clams.

Old Bay Pasta

unlikely pasta ingredients

-combine 1-1/4 cup semolina, 1-1/4 cup wheat flour, and 1 tablespoon old bay seasoning in a food processor
-in a seperate bowl whisk together 3 eggs and 2 tablespoons orange juice; combine with flours in food processor
-mix until a ball of dough forms

when I first did this, I stopped too early and tried to use the dough when it was like this:

not ready!

The dough was very tough and kind of dry.  I ended up adding another tablespoon of orange juice, but then the dough seemed too moist.  I ended up just kneading it with some white flour to make it the right consistency.

-make the noodles using the 6 thickness and fettuccine die

chop 3 large carrots, 1 potato, and 1 clove of garlic.  Add to boiling water.
-once the pasta is ready, add it with the vegetables.
-boil ~5 minutes
-plate and top with a container of clams!

not the most photogenic, but it tasted good!


Total Cost: $4.69

organic whole wheat flour: $1.69
-semolina flour: $1.66
-old bay: free!
-organic orange juice: $0.08
-organic eggs: $0.50
-3 organic carrots: $0.46
-1 organic potato: $0.20
-1 bulb organic garlic: $0.10
-clams: free!

I have so much left over…definitely probably enough for at least 2 meals



“Creamy” Manhattan Clam Chowder

Back to reality..

I haven’t really been cooking lately…actually, the last time I cooked was Friday night, I think.  I was super spoiled over the weekend with nice pre-Valentine’s Day meals + I had tons of leftover pizza.  Honestly, I probably would have run out of food otherwise!

I was not feeling any more grains today, so I decided to make soup.  (More evidence I am out of food – here is what I ate today:  oatmeal, left over pizza, a granola bar, more oatmeal).  I was definitely feeling a bit of a change.  Unfortunately, I also had to dip into my emergency canned food section of the pantry.  Here is what I had to work with:

random much?

From left I have whey, organic whole tomatoes, baby clams, chorizo flavored refried beans, organic onion, organic garlic, and organic turnip.

A major reason I went for the clams was because I’m starting to feel like my iron might be a little low.  Little known fact- shellfish contain much more iron than beef.  I’ve struggled with anemia for the past 6-ish years, so cooking with iron in mind is something I feel like I’ve perfected over the years.  Because I wanted to get the most iron possible, I actually eliminated the whey.  I’m not positive what the calcium content in whey is, but calcium inhibits the absorption of iron.  Vitamin C, however, helps the absorption of iron so making a tomato based clam chowder seemed like a no brainer.  I wanted to add the beans to the soup to add iron and also a fuller, creamier texture and flavor since dairy was out.  Also, I didn’t have any potatoes so I figured the turnip could be a good substitute.  It def=initely was, and I can see myself making that substitution again.

I’ve made clam chowder quite a bit and this adaptation is one of my favorites.  The chorizo flavor in the beans went well with the clams, and the turnips added extra flavor.  Here’s what I did:

Creamy Manhattan Clam Chowder

-combine a 28 oz can tomatoes, 14 oz can refried beans, 12 oz can baby clams in a large pot
-add 1/2 a diced onion, 1/2 cup julienned turnip, 1 clove garlic
-season with bay leaf, salt, pepper, thyme, and crushed red pepper flakes
-simmer for ~20 minutes

needs more green..story of my life

Sooo easy.  This actually made quite a bit, too.  I ate two bowls tonight and have 2-3 bowls left.  Hooray for lunch tomorrow 🙂

Total Price: $5.48 (for 4-5 servings)

Tomatos: $2.89
Clams (not organic): $1.29
Refried Beans: (not organic) $1.10
Onion: $0.19
Turnip: $0.10
Garlic: $0.10

Considering that Darn Good Soup (an amazing soup place in B-town) sells a bowl for ~ the price of my entire pot, I think that’s a pretty good deal.