Stuffed clams have been another Christmas Eve tradition in our family for many years. This was one dish I had missed. But while most of this dish is stuffing, it’s pretty easy to mimic the clams by substituting them for shiitake mushrooms. The texture and flavor is very similar and really delicious. They’re even better the next day as leftovers. Just add a bit more lemon if they get too dry. If you’re not a fan of mushrooms, you can substitute with eggplant as it can have a similar texture to mushrooms (it would just need to be peeled and cut very small). You can get scallop shells that are dishwasher safe online. If you don’t have or can’t find shells, you can just use ramekins or baking cups.
Preheat the oven to 400F. Wash slice the mushrooms, and mix with the tamari or soy sauce to coat. Place the mushrooms in a single layer on a parchment lined baking sheet. Bake for about 15-20 minutes. Once the mushrooms have cooled for a bit, you can cut them into smaller pieces and set aside. In a large bowl, add the breadcrumbs and remaining ingredients; then add the mushrooms and mix well. Taste to see if it needs more of anything. I used a little more of the Old Bay Seasoning and it was a little hot; so you’ll need to adjust to see what works for you. You can refrigerate the mixture to make the shells the next day.
When you’re ready to fill the shells, set the oven to 350F. Fill the shells with the mixture and set them on a baking sheet. Sprinkle a little paprika on the stuffed shells and bake in the oven for about 15 minutes. Squeeze a little lemon on them before serving.