Baked Stuffed Clams with Garlic Butter
2 cups shucked clams
24 empty clam shells
10 tbsp butter, at room temperature
1 tbsp minced garlic
1 tbsp finely chopped shallots
1/4 cup finely chopped parsley
3/4 tsp finely chopped thyme, or half the amount dried
1/2 tsp hot red pepper flakes
salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
3 tbsp fine fresh breadcrumbs
3 tbsp grated Parmesan cheese
Cut each clam into 4 or 5 pices. Fill each clam shell with equal amounts of the clams.
Put butter into mixing bowl and add garlic, shallots, parsley, thyme, red pepper flakes, salt and pepper. Spoon equal amounts of the butter onto each filled clam. Smooth over the top.
Blend breadcrumbs and cheese and additional pepper to taste. Sprinkle equal amounts of the mixture on top of each stuffed clam.
Place stuffed clams under broiler 5 or 6 inches from the source of heat. Cook about 3 minutes and turn the oven heat to 450 F. Let cook 2 minutes longer. Serve immediately.