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Clams with pancetta and spring onions

  • Preparation Time20 mins
  • Cooking Time15 mins
  • Serves4
  • DifficultyEasy

For the clams

15ml olive oil
50g chopped pancetta or bacon
75g chopped spring onions
4 to 5 dozen cherrystone clams, rinsed and picked over to remove those with broken shells or those that are opened
250ml vermouth or dry white wine
330ml reduced-sodium chicken broth, divided
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
200g rice, regular or instant, cooked according to package directions
30g freshly chopped parsley leaves
For the clams:
1) Heat oil in a large frying pan over medium-high heat. Add pancetta and cook 3 minutes, until golden brown. Add spring onions, clams and the vermouth (if using) and simmer 1 minute. Add 250ml of the broth and bring to a simmer. Cover and simmer 5 to 7 minutes, until shells open. Discard any shells that do not open.

2) With a slotted spoon, remove clams from pan and set aside. Simmer 2 minutes until sauce thickens. Season, to taste, with salt and black pepper.

3) Serve 1/2 of the clams (24 to 36) over rice and cover with thickened sauce. Top with parsley and serve with the garlic toast. Reserve the remaining clams (about 2 dozen) for fettuccine, if desired.

For the garlic toast:
1) Cut the baguette into 2.5cm thick slices. Place the bread slices on a baking tray and drizzle some olive oil over them.

2) Bake for about 10 minutes, until golden and crispy. While still warm, rub the garlic clove on the toasts.

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