Golden Fried Clam Strips


6 cups canola oil
2 pounds clam strips (about 4 cups)*
1 cup buttermilk, well-shaken

1 cup cornstarch
1/2 cup cornmeal (preferably yellow, for color)
1/3 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon curry powder
1/2 teaspoon celery salt
1/2 teaspoon cayenne
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

2 lemons
1 1/2 cups fresh flat-leaf parsley sprigs, well-dried and loosely packed
Kosher salt, to taste


Start by heating canola oil in pot over moderate heat until a deep-fat thermometer registers 380°F.

While oil is heating, rinse and drain clam strips in a colander and stir together with buttermilk in a large bowl. Drain clams well in a colander set over a bowl, at least 5 minutes (reserve drained buttermilk).

Stir together cornstarch, cornmeal, flour, curry powder, celery salt, cayenne, and kosher salt in a large bowl.

Dredge 1 handful of drained clams in flour mixture, then shake in a large sieve over flour bowl to remove excess flour. Transfer clams, one by one, shaking them again to remove any excess flour mixture, to a baking sheet. Wash and dry lemons and cut crosswise into 1/16-inch slices. Dip 3 or 4 slices in reserved buttermilk, let excess drip off, then dredge in flour mixture, shaking off excess (don't use the sieve).

Fry coated clams with coated lemon slices and 1/4 cup parsley sprigs per batch until clams are crisp and golden, about 1 1/2 minutes, then transfer with a slotted spoon to paper towels to drain. Sprinkle with kosher salt to taste. Return oil to 380°F between batches, removing any bits of fried batter with a fine sieve and coating next batch of clams and lemon slices. The batches will get progressively darker, but that won't affect the flavor.

* You can purchase raw clam strips from your local seafood store.  If they do not carry them on a regular basis you can ask them to order them for you.

Recipe adapted from: epicurious