In my family, there are only two ways to prepare Razor Clams, fried and chowder! Today I am making chowder with homemade Amish white bread.
I have been fortunate to have direct access to Razor Clams my whole life, and when I say direct, I mean one with nature! I honestly do not know if they even exist in other parts of the world. If they don’t, it’s super sad, because they are amazing! Clam chowder is my son Jonathan’s favorite meal. When he was really little he said he wanted to be a professional chowder tester when he grew up. Fried Razor Clams is hands down my favorite meal! It’s a ton of work, and worth every single bit of it. We will do that another day.
The first ten years of my life were spent growing up in Seattle and Bellevue. So on many Friday afternoons, we would get home from school, wait for dad, pack the car, and we were on our way to grandma Pearl, and papa Joes in Ocean Shores. My brother Jeff and I would sleep in sleeping bags on the floor in grandmas living room and we would wake up on Saturday morning and quietly turn on the tv. In those days, that’s the only access one had to watch Scooby-Doo! On Tide mornings it was a no-choice, get up, gets dressed and get down to the beach. Every person is allowed a 15 clam limit. That includes little thumb sucking, doll carrying, still in her pajamas, Scooby-Doo watching girls! And when your willful and won’t get dressed Papa Joe will pick you up and take you to the car just like that because you are 15 clams! I was then, and know now, that no game warden was going to believe this little girl dug those clams herself. And if you say really loud to your grandma “how come you're giving me all your clams?” You're going to get shushed very vigorously!
Clam digging is almost an art in itself. I watched my dad in waders in the surf, tapping the sand with his shovel trying to get the clams “to show” and wondered why he wanted to be in the water instead of up on the beach with us. Grandma Pearl was a crazy good digger! She always wore this red and white quilted coat, one sleeve rolled up past her elbow. She would point to the clam hole and place the blade of her shovel between the hole and the ocean. Then in fast motion, dig three to four shovels of sand out, put her hand in the hole, and “taadaa” a clam! It was precision, she was superhuman to me! It makes my heart happy remembering her all young and healthy and full of life.
Grandma, why are you putting that clam in my bucket? SHHHHHHHHH!
Kids just don’t understand this day and age how devastating it was to miss Scooby-Doo!!

This chowder is her recipe, with a few tweaks from me. It’s being served in this gorgeous Cherished Friends Soup tureen regularly $207 and on sale for $165.99. Sweetiepie Soup cup regularly $61.99 on sale for 49.99 each. Red Bacopa serving tray regularly $109.99 on sale for $88.99

Kim and Pearls Clam Chowder

  • 1 1/2 lbs pounds chopped clams
  • 6 large Yukon gold or red potatoes scrubbed and chopped with skins on
  • 4 large carrots peeled and cut into small pieces
  • 1 large onion chopped
  • 5 strips of bacon chopped and fried
  • 1/2 cup of fresh parsley chopped
  • 1/2 cup of butter
  • Six ribs of celery chopped fine
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cayenne pepper
  • 2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 cup instant mashed potatoes
  • One bottle clam juice
  • 1/2 gallon whole milk
  • 1 quart half and half

In a large stockpot fry bacon and add butter, onion, celery, carrots, and potatoes, sauté till veggies are tender. Add salt, pepper, cayenne, bay leaves, parsley, and clam juice. Let simmer 5 minutes. Add whole milk, and half & half. Cook on low till very warm. You don’t want the milk to break so heating slowly will allow for this. Do not let it boil. When warmed through add instant mashed potatoes. Cover and stir frequently. This helps thicken the chowder. You may have to add more instant potatoes depending on how thick you like your chowder. Add clams and simmer 20 minutes. Serve with fresh-baked bread and a green salad!