Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Clam Fritters Will Be the End of Me

Oh I love those little breaded clam fritters! I'm especially fond of the recipe given on the back of the Bumble Bee cans of baby clams, though I use coconut flour instead of white flour. To adjust the recipe to take into account differences, I use one tbsp of coconut flour as a substitute for the one cup of flour called for; yes, coconut flour is just that hygroscopic. Any more and you'll have some excruciatingly dry and unsavory clam biscuits.

The only thing I don't like about the recipe is the popping. No matter what I try, it seems like I can't avoid getting grease spewed on me and all over the surroundings. For a while the clams almost acted as if they were sentient, as they would be nearly entirely quiet when left alone in the pan, but as soon as I lifted the grease guard they'd vigorously try to splash hot grease upon me. It's almost as if the dish detests me and is out to get me. The hamburgers don't complain, liver behaves entirely well, and the eggs are perfect angels -- but the clam fritters sure aren't going to get eaten without putting up a hell of a fight.

Moisture is the obvious suspect. Since water has a boiling point lower than that of grease, it's the first to vaporize. When the water droplets are submerged in the hot grease, that means it'll have to travel through the fluid and break the surface, and it does so with enough violence that the surface bursts and sends grease droplets everywhere. I've made sure to thoroughly drain the can upon opening and even pat down the clams with paper towels -- and yet still they try to spit in my eye. Argh! All that hidden moisture!

Next time I try this recipe I'll try actually wrapping the clams in the paper towel and letting it sit for a few minutes in the hope that the water will be whisked out. This may be a dangerous recipe, but a delicious enough one that I intend to win the battle. Whatever hot grease they do manage to nick me with, I always triumph over the fritters in the end upon consumption. They'll never defeat me!

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