For a classic and easy clam dip preparation, gather 7 ounces of clams (chopped, not including shell weight), 8 ounces of cream cheese, 2 teaspoons lemon juice and Worcestershire sauce, 1 tablespoon grated onion, and salt and pepper to taste. Mix thoroughly, and place into refrigerator to chill before serving.
With regard to clams, one can use either fresh specimens, such as littlenecks, or the canned, prepared variety. If one chooses the canned variety, it is important to reserve the juice or liqueur inside to add further flavor to the recipe (about 4 teaspoons). With fresh clams, cook and allow to cool before chopping and combining them with the remaining ingredients. Do not use any clams that do not open naturally during cooking, as they could be illness-inducing. When mixing the ingredients together, it is easier and more effective to use cream cheese that is already softened to room temperature.
If guests desire a bit of heat in their clam dip, try adding either a hot sauce, such as Red Hot or Tabasco, or a dried pepper, such as cayenne, making sure to monitor the level of spiciness to suit the customer's palate. Other potential twists include adding garlic powder, onion juice or additional reserved clam liqueur to further enhance flavor. Serve dip with crackers, baguette slices, potato chips or small pieces of chopped raw vegetables, including celery, endive or crunchy spears of red bell pepper.