First off, don’t worry, the clams are real. The bacon, however, is not.
A few weeks ago Janna was explaining to me that one of the things she used to really enjoy before she became a vegetarian was the old fashioned classic, clams casino. I replied, “isn’t that just clams filled with a bit of butter and bacon inside? Surely, I could use fake bacon for that, right?”
And so I did, with the results far tasting far better than my admitttedly murky, Android-phone produced photo above indicates.
I simply used the recipe from Joy of Cooking with Lightlife Smart Bacon replacing the traditional pork bacon. Shucking the clams, while messy and a bit time consuming, wasn’t as difficult as I’d been warned.* I got to the clams to open by giving them a quick trip through a warm oven. While you do lose some flavor there, I figured with the bacon and other ingredients, I could get away with it.
If you wanted to make this really healthy, you’d replace the butter with one of the numerous spreads/alternatives that exist out there. But since Janna is a baker, we always have butter around and that’s what I went with here.
Anyway, I’d recommend this recipe to anyone looking for an old fashioned classic as an appetizer or light dinner.
* Clam shucking top tip: When shucking clams, wear a shirt that you can afford to have covered in liquid and smelling “like the back of a seafood restaurant” as Janna described it.