Pan Roasted Clams

An Italian Seaside delight, this recipe was created by Jeffery Hobbs.  Most people are afraid to cook seafood.  Its understandable as usually its easy to over or under cook.  However, adhering to this recipe should guarantee a perfect dish.  It's great as an appetizer, but converts easily into an entrée with minimal effort.  See the tips at the bottom.

If the clams are dirty, scrub with a clean pot scrubber or nail brush. Hard shell clams are usually pretty free of sand, but if you wish, soak a few hours in a saline solution of 1 cup of salt dissolved in 3 quarts cold water.

Slice the sausage into coins slightly thinner than
½”. Place the skillet over medium heat and toss in the sausage coins. The sausage will begin to sizzle in a few minutes. Turn the sausage over after 4 minutes of sizzling, and cook for two more minutes. Depending on the sausage, there may be a lot of grease in the pan. Pour off all but a light coating.

Add the onions stir occasionally and cook until soft. Turn the heat to medium high. Throw in your clams and stir to mix well. Cook for about 5 minutes to get the clams nice and hot. Add the garlic, stir a few times, add the wine and water, and cover immediately. Adjust the temperature to medium and cook for about 10 minutes.

While the clams are cooking, slice the bread and toast lightly.

Remove the lid. Add the tomato sauce and butter, cover and bring to a simmer, and cook for 5 more minutes.

If any clams remain closed after the full cooking time, pry open with a butter knife. Any bad clams will be discovered during scrubbing. They will fall apart and have a foul odor.

Season lightly with salt and pepper.

Place 5 clams per bowl, spooning a little of the sauce into each bowl. Garnish with parsley and serve with a slice of the ciabatta.

Main Ingredients:
Marguez sausage links, substitute spicy Italian 2 each
Garlic clove, minced 1 each
Yellow Onion, sliced1 each
Little Neck clams35 each
Dry white wine, substitite water ½ cup
Water¼ cup
Tomato Sauce 3 cups
Butter 4 TBS
Garnish and Serve:
Ciabatta (Italian flat bread) 1 each
Chopped Parsley garnish
Sea Salt & Ground Pepper to taste

The bread is optional but definitely a plus for soaking up any remaining juices in the bowl. The chopped parsley does add a little flavor, but does more for appearance. Use whatever is handy to add a little green. After all, we usually eat with our eyes first.

Save any left over wine in the refrigerator. It comes in handy for recipes like these. You can serve this with a crisp (acidic) sauvignon blanc. If you do, use ½ cup of this wine in the sauce.

Use your own tomato sauce if you wish. For a great last minute sauce, substitute about 2 cups chopped tomatoes and some fresh or dried herbs (omit the water). Be experimental!

To turn this into a great entrée, increase the clams to 7 per serving, add an extra link of sausage, and serve over linguini or spaghetti.

Low-Fat Options:
Use Lowfat Turkey Sausage and extra-virgin Olive Oil instead of butter.