When it came to dinner parties at my Grandparents’ house, they always made sure there were some permanent items on the buffet: my Grandpa’s AMAZING smoked salmon (fresh caught from Alaska by him), gherkins and olives in a cute little crystal tray, and clam dip. I have a very clear memory of watching my Grandpa make that dip. We are in their yellow, cupboarded kitchen, at the counter next to the refrigerator, and I distinctly see in my pin-pointed memory the very moment he shook Worcestershire sauce onto the cream cheese. BOOM. Seared into my brain forever. At that point, after years of refining his recipe, there was no need to measure anything. He would whip it up in a bowl and pull out the Laura Scudder’s ridged potato chips and we were good to go. And we went. That dip didn’t last long under our supervision. You remember Laura Scudder’s twin pack Dip Chips, right? Apparently, now you can only get them if you are in a DeLorean, driving Back to the Future, but they were pretty darn good then.
The great thing about this dip is that it is only four ingredients, takes five minutes to make and is consistently delicious. It tastes better the longer it is sitting together, so if you know company is coming over, make it ahead and let it hang out in the fridge for awhile. The other thing I learned from watching my Grandpa is that a Harvey Wallbanger is THE party drink. As soon as he was done with the dip, he made everyone a Harvey Wallbanger. All I knew, was that I swore to myself that when I got old enough, THAT was the drink for me.
PS: After careful consideration, it is definitely NOT the drink for me. But that Galliano bottle is pretty cool.
Take the bar of cream cheese and set it out on the counter for 20 minutes or so. This brings it a bit up to room temperature and makes it easier to blend with your other ingredients.
Speaking of those other ingredients, put them all in a bowl at once.
Take your hand mixer and mix away!
Word of advice: Make sure your bowl is big enough. If it is not, you will shoot clam juice all over yourself, the counter, and the kitchen. No need to ask me how I know this.
Scoop it all into a fancy dish, cover and chill for up to an hour. Or dig in. Either one is totally acceptable. As a matter of fact, I’m digging in right now. I figure it’s just like that tree falling in the woods: If no one is here to see me eat it, did the dip really exist in the first place?
Cecil Morgan’s Clam Dip
- 1 (8 oz.) package of cream cheese
- 1 can minced clams (reserve 1/2 the juice for the dip)
- 1 Tbsp. lemon juice (to taste)
- 1 Tbsp. Worcestershire Sauce (to taste)
- Let cream cheese set out for 20 minutes for easier blending.
- Add clams, juice, lemon juice, Worcestershire sauce and mix together. (By hand or hand mixer)
- Chill for 30 minutes – 1 hour.
- Eat with ridged potato chips.