Prep 20 mins
Cook 15 mins
The clam that Rhode Islanders call a quahog possesses an impressive variety of names, and even the word "quahog" has more than one spelling and a number of pronunciations: KO-hog, KWO-hog, and KWA-hog. Indians used quahog shells to make beads that were used as money (called wampum). Although quahogs can be found along the North American Atlantic coast from Canada's Gulf of Saint Lawrence to Florida, they are particularly abundant between Cape Cod and New Jersey. From the New England chapter of the United States Regional Cookbook, Culinary Arts Institute of Chicago, 1947.
- 2 dozen quahogs, reserve 1/3 cup of the liquor
- 1⁄2 onion, peeled and chopped
- 3 cups milk
- 1 teaspoon salt (more to taste)
- 1⁄4 teaspoon pepper
- 1⁄8 teaspoon sugar
- 2 tablespoons butter or 2 tablespoons bacon fat
- 2 tablespoons flour
- 1⁄2 cup cream
- 6 slices toast, cut into rounds
- Scrub clams, and place in a kettle with 1 1/2 cups water; cover and steam five minutes or until all are opened.
- Allow to cool.
- Remove from shells and drain, saving the liquor.
- Mince clams, place in a double boiler with clam juice and onion; set over direct heat until boiling point is reached.
- Place over boiling water; add milk, salt, pepper and sugar and heat to scalding.
- Blend butter or bacon fat with the flour, add to hot soup and cook for about five minutes, stirring almost constantly at first to make a smooth mixture.
- Strain to remove onion and clams.
- Add cream and heat thoroughly.
- Pour hot soup over a small round of toast in each soup cup.