Sunday, December 29, 2013

Creamy Clam Deliciousness

If you're here looking for creamy clam deliciousness in any form other than a really good recipe,  you'll need to look elsewhere.  Sorry.

So, posting recipes isn't normally a thing I do. I love having all my recipes together on Pinterest, but to pin something on Pinterest, it has to exist on the internet and this recipe doesn't. So, I'm making it exist.

This is a recipe that was given to my mother back in the eighties by an elderly lady in Connecticut that she took care of.  And it's pure, unadulterated, unhealthy deliciousness. I rarely make it, although I don't know why.  I love it, it's cheap, it's fast and easy, and it's so rich that you barely eat any, so you have plenty of leftovers.

I know.  You're thinking, "Clams? Yuck!"  But trust me.

 I am not a food blogger.

Clam Pie

Two cans chopped clams (if you REALLY hate clams that much, you can make it with small scallops.)
8 TBS (1/2 cup) butter
1 1/2-2 cups crushed milk crackers or lightly salted Ritz (Milk crackers are a thing that exist in Connecticut.  I have never found them anywhere else, so I use Ritz.  Regular Ritz are too salty, but hunt of salt Ritz are perfect.  I use two full sleeves.)
1 cup heavy cream
Garlic powder (I just sprinkle in a generous amount)
Salt an pepper to taste
Crumbled bacon (I have never made it with this, but as I was typing up the recipe just now, I had an epiphany.  Topping it with crumbled bacon is a thing I must do sometime.)

Pre-heat oven to 350 (F)

Melt butter.  Mix with cracker crumbs, garlic, salt, and pepper.  Press slightly more than half into a deep pie dish. (It doesn't have to be a deep dish pie pan, but it can't be too shallow, either.)

Drain the juice from ONE can of clams.  Mix clams (and juice from the undrained can) with cream.  Pour into pie pan.

Top the cream mixture with the remaining crumbs.

Bake for 20-30 minutes (until top is lightly golden). Let cool for 10-15 minutes, then slice and serve.  And die from ecstasy.

No, seriously.  I'm not. I know you're shocked.

Friday, December 6, 2013

The Girl Who Lived

 I don't have a single memory of playing house with her.

Why pretend-play the daily drudgery of life with dolls and plastic dishes?  Instead, we pretended to be spies.  Rock stars.  Animal trainers.  Explorers.

Our Barbies lived the most fabulous lives. No, really. The most. So did our My Little Ponies.  And Strawberry Shortcake dolls. And  paper dolls.  I was so bored when I played these things with anyone else.  Only with her did paper dolls and plastic ponies get caught up in international espionage while vacationing in Paris en route to a Mediterranean cruise.

One day she decided she would like to run a radio station.  Being eight wasn't going to stop her. So, WRRT was born. At least once a week for an entire summer we would stand outside on my grandmother's porch and sing the greatest hits of 1983 at the top of our lungs. I was worried the neighbors would yell at us for being too loud.  She was worried we weren't singing loud enough for them to enjoy it.

From my earliest memories of her, she lived.

No matter what the situation, she was always having more fun than anyone else in the room.

Many of us may day dream about picking up, moving halfway around the world and starting a new life on a new continent. She actually did it.
She didn't need to be given a terminal diagnosis to finally go out and live life.  She simply always lived that way. "That sounds fun--I want to do that!" was reason enough to do it. 

And as I struggled with the events of my life last year, she sent me a message reminding me that I deserve to live, too. She said, "You're happier than I've seen you since we were kids. The whole family says it. Don't waste your time feeling guilty for choosing happiness. Life is too short for that.  Spend your time making your happiness worth the pain."

I'm going to miss her so much.

 Renae Turcotte