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Recipe: Clam Toast

Recipe: Clam Toast


A few years ago, I took an overnight kayak and camping trip from Charleston, South Carolina, to one of the remote islands off the East Coast, at which time I learned how to dig for clams. My guide and I filled a bushel, then cooked them over an open fire right there on the beach – and they tasted superb. This clam toast recipe pays homage to the simplicity of that evening’s meal. You need only a few ingredients to amplify the bright, briny flavor of the clams – and great bread to soak up all the liquid. 

Serves | 2 to 4 |

  • 2 Tbsp canola oil
  • 10 cloves garlic, minced
  • ½ red onion, julienned
  • 4 Tbsp butter, divided
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 lb clams in the shell
  • 3 Tbsp white wine
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • 2 Tbsp parsley
  • 2 thick slices sourdough bread


| Preparation | In a medium saucepan, heat canola oil. Add garlic, red onion and 2 tablespoons butter; season with salt and pepper. Cook until translucent, for 5 to 7 minutes. Add clams and white wine; cook until clams open, and then add lemon zest and parsley. Remove from heat and set aside. In a large skillet, add remaining butter; add bread, and toast on both sides. Transfer toast to a clean plate or bowl, and slice each piece in half. Evenly distribute clams and liquid on toast, and serve immediately.

Amanda Elliott is the chef at Peachtree Catering ( in Columbia, Missouri, and authors the website Rustic Supper (, where she shares recipes centering on the idea of the communal table and embracing the heritage of food through travel. She also hosts a series of pop-up dinners in Columbia called Sunday Suppers.

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