The last Clam Dip Appetizer Recipe You’ll Ever Go Hunting For
This is a recipe that my mother used to make when I was a child. It became my favorite, and as I grew up I learned to make it myself. It’s my all time favorite dip. If you give it a try, you will like it too, so don’t blame me if you can’t get enough!
The ingredients are super simple: cream cheese, minced clams, and Tabasco sauce. I always insisted on certain brands once I learned to make it myself, but you can work with whatever brands you like most. I only use real Philadelphia Cream Cheese, in the ‘bar’ shaped package. I only use Snow’s (also known as Doxsee) brand clams, and always minced. If you like your clam pieces to be more of a chewing thing, you can use chopped clams instead. I don’t like them so big myself.
Cream Cheese, Minced Clams, Dip Ingredients Are Simple
It's a really short list of ingredients. You will be amazed at how good it tastes!
2 eight ounces packages of cream cheese
2 six and a half ounce cans of minced clams
6 drops of Tabasco sauce (to taste)
Read all the way through before starting.
Clam Dip Appetizers Recipe: Execution Is Everything
Well-made dips make great appetizers. But we have all run into hors d’oeuvres, and dips especially, that were not made well, and taste like it! So you will want to make sure you make this dip right, and when you do, you will love it. I know there are wrong ways to make this dip because my Mother, bless her, has tried them!
First, get the two eight-ounce packages of Philadelphia cream cheese out of the fridge well before the time you want to make it. The idea is to let the cream cheese soften at room temperature for a while.
Unwrap them and drop them into the mixing bowl you will use for the dip. I would recommend at least a 2 or 3 quart bowl, preferably with smooth sloping sides. In addition, if you have a nice mixing bowl set with snap on tops, or even a storage bowl with sloping sides and a snap on top, that will work better. It’s nice to be able to serve some out and have an easy-fitting lid to cover the rest.
Mixing Bowl Time For Clam Dip Appetizer Recipe
Once the cream cheese has softened up nicely, open the two cans of Snow’s minced clams. Drain the juice from the clams into something like a measuring cup, so you can easily pour it. We will use some of it in the dip as we mix it. Dump the two cans of clams onto the cream cheese and start mixing it up. It will still be somewhat stiff, even though it has softened up.
At this point, when you start wrestling with the cream cheese, you might be tempted to hit it with a blender or a mixer. STOP. Just let me say that making this in a blender is one of the wrong ways to make it that my Mother learned. The resulting texture, or lack there-of, is very unappetizing. It just won’t be fun to eat, at all. IF, however, you have some sort of mixer, like a KitchenAid Stand Mixer, that you can use at a very low speed setting, then you might be able to do it that way.
As you start to get the clams mixed into the cream cheese, add in some of the juice that you drained off earlier. Go easy at first, no more than a couple of ounces at a time. That way you can ‘sneak up’ on the consistency you want. Personally, I like it a little on the thick side, so I rarely use all the clam juice. If you prefer it much thinner, you might use it all.
Keep mixing the clams into the cream cheese and adding juice until you are getting close to a consistency you like. I guess I would describe my favored consistency as somewhat like cookie dough, but just a little thinner. The consistency you choose will also dictate what you are going to dip in it, or if you will be spreading it instead.
Appetizer Time: Clam Dip!
As you get the clams mixed in, you can start mixing in a few
drops of Tabasco sauce. You will want to go slowly with the Tabasco and taste
it as you go. It won’t get spicy at all unless you really go crazy with the
Tabasco. If you like it spicy, go crazy. If you're not crazy about spicy, don't go so crazy.
Once you get it mixed up to taste, it gets even better if
you let it sit in the fridge for a couple of hours. For your first few times
making it, you might want to keep the remaining clam juice until you get it
back out of the fridge, as it will usually thicken up a little while in the
fridge. If it has thickened up more than you like, gradually add some of the clam juice, stirring until it is the consistency you like.
Now you are ready to get it out and start dipping! My favorite crackers for dipping are either Manischewitz Egg & Onion Matzos or Ruffles Potato Chips. Really. Have fun, and please feel free to leave a comment letting me know what you think.