Take advantage of local and seasonal foods with Blue Eggs and Yellow Tomatoes: Recipes from a Modern Kitchen Garden by Jeanne Kelley, including recipes like Clams with Chorizo and Saffron; Smoked Whitefish and Beet Relish Tartines; and Oven-Roasted Frites with Herbes de Provence.
Yield: 4 to 6 Servings
Use smaller clams (about 1-1/2 to 2 inches) for this recipe. I use Manila or little neck clams. If you can't find the firm, fully cooked Spanish chorizo, you can substitute pepperoni or a firm Italian sopressata. Serve with warm bread for sopping up the rich, mildly spicy broth and some salad greens on the side.
Heat the olive oil in a heavy, large pot or deep skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and saute until tender, about 8 minutes. Add the chorizo, garlic, and saffron and stir for 1 minute Add the clam juice and wine and simmer until the mixture is reduced to 2 cups, about 4 minutes. Add the clams, cover, and cook until they open, about 5 minutes. (Discard any clams that do not open.)
Ladle the clams and broth into bowls, sprinkle with parsley, and serve.
Saffron gives food an intense golden yellow hue and a rich, slightly musky, old-world flavor. It has been used since the ancient Greeks. Saffron threads are the dried stigmas of the purple crocus sativus flower. The spice is expensive because each crocus produces only three stigmas that must be carefully collected by hand. But a little of this Southwest Asian native goes along way. In fact, too much can result in a bitter flavor. You can actually grow saffron crocus in your garden-zones 6 to 8 in the south and 6 to 9 in the west. The corms are available from White Flower Farms (www.whiteflowerfarms.com).
This page created June 2008
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