Chilli Clams

Chili Clams 1

A while back, I had some leftover King Crab legs after making a seafood soup. The crab was, unfortunately, not the best quality and I decided to jazz them up a little with a spicy sauce. I took as my inspiration the very popular Singapore Chilli Crab and made a ‘quick and dirty’, less complex version of the sauce for that dish that was based primarily on simple canned tomato sauce with Sriracha Sauce for the fire. Anyway, the end product was very good (despite the poor crab) and I wanted to reproduce it. Unfortunately, the only crab I could find was the same poor quality brand I had the first time, and Snow Crab, which I don’t much care for. Instead, I decided to use some clams I had in my freezer and the result was even nicer…

The Ingredients

  • Small Clams;
  • Tomato Sauce;
  • Sriracha Sauce;
  • Finely diced mild Green Chilli;
  • Vinegar;
  • Sugar;
  • Dry Sherry or Rice Wine.

(See further on for the general amounts of each item)…

 

Chili Clams 2

The package of clams I weighed almost a pound (400g). I am not all that keen on the larger species but these smallish ones (I don’t know the type) are lovely and sweet with firm, plump flesh. Once thawed, if using frozen, reserve the liquor thrown off and, if necessary, strain it to remove any sand.

 

Chili Clams 3

Here you can see the amount of green chilli I use. The chilli is the very mild Anaheim variety and I used it more for color than additional spiciness. As for the sauce, you want to end up with about a cup. I used about a quarter cup each of tomato sauce and Sriracha sauces (you can vary the proportions as you see fit), and then added t tablespoons of Sherry, 1 tablespoon of White Vinegar, and 1 teaspoon of sugar. Finally, I made up the remaining volume with (most of) the Clam Liquor.

 

Chili Clams 4

To cook, heat a little oil in a pan over high heat and gently slice in the clams followed by the green chilli (save a little for a final garnish).

 

Chili Clams 5

As soon as you can hear the clams sizzling, pour over the sauce and let it bubble and cook down until about half the original volume. Finally, plate for service and sprinkle over the last of the chilli.

I plated a small amount as an appetizer portion (as seen in the first picture) but I actually ate the whole amount as a light lunch. I didn’t do it here, but it struck me that some sort of bread on the side would be nice. Indeed, I was thinking that mini Indian style Roti might be quite elegant….

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