Rhode Island Stuffed Quahogs

My mom’s stuffed quahogs (aka “stuffies”) are one of my favorite things EVER. She’s been making them forever, and I finally got the recipe! Stuffies are a big thing in Rhode Island where we’re from. They’re large clam shells stuffed with a mixture of chopped clams, spicy sausage (we use Portuguese chourico) and bread stuffing, then roasted in the oven. They’re perfect if you’re having a BBQ and want an appetizer to pass around. You can also wash and save the shells to re-use them for next time, this way if you can’t find big quahogs you can buy smaller ones and stuff the larger shells.

10 quahogs, scrubbed, steamed, and chopped
2 bell peppers (we used smaller mixed ones for color) minced
1/2 large onion, minced
3 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 cup white wine (a blush wine would work too)
1/3 cup mixed fresh herbs, chopped (such as parsley basil or chives)
2 large links Portuguese chourico, minced
1 Italian bread loaf (day old bread, not soft), broken down to crumbs
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
1 tablespoon red pepper flakes
1/2 tablespoon paprika
Black pepper, to taste
Adobo seasoning, to taste (I use the Goya brand)

Start by steaming the clams until they fully open. Let cool, then chop the clams. Don’t chop them too small though, you want people to taste the clams in there! Next, sauté the onion, garlic, and peppers until softened, about 5 minutes. Add the chourico and chopped clams and cook for another 5 minutes.

Transfer the mixture to a large bowl and add handfuls of the breadcrumbs until the the consistency is right. You want it to be like the texture of thanksgiving stuffing. You may need to add splashes of clam juice to get the right consistency. Next, add the fresh herbs, paprika, cheese, red pepper flakes, adobo seasoning, and pepper. Mix well. Fill the clam shells with the stuffing, and place each of them in a little foil pouch with a tiny piece of butter on top. Wrap tightly and cook in oven for 20 minutes. Remove from the oven and unwrap from the foil. Serve hot. Enjoy!!