This is quite a complex recipe for us, but it's a goodie. By grilling the razor clams and serving with fennel, thyme and garlic is a great way of teasing out their evocative flavour.
- 16 razor clams
- 2 celery sticks
- 1 fennel bulb
- 1 leek, small, white part only
- 1 large onion
- 1 red chilli
- 2 garlic cloves
- 1/2 bunch of lemon thyme
- 10g of Parmesan
- 50g of white breadcrumbs, fresh
- 120g of butter
- 250ml of white wine
- sea salt
Wash the clams well under cold running water to remove any sand.
Tie the thyme sprigs together with string and set aside. Trim the celery, fennel and leek and peel the onion, reserving all the trimmings and peelings. Evenly dice the vegetables into 1cm dice.
Finely chop the chilli, reserving the seeds. Peel and finely chop the garlic, and add with the chilli to the diced vegetables.
In a bowl, grate the Parmesan and mix with the breadcrumbs.
Place the reserved vegetable trimmings and the chilli seeds into a large saucepan with the thyme and half of the butter. Place the pan over a high heat and cook the vegetables until softened, approximately 2 minute. Add the wine and continue cooking until the liquid is reduced by half.
Then, add the clams and cover the pan with a tight-fitting lid. Continue to cook over a high heat for 4 minutes or until the clams have fully opened, then tip the contents of the pan into a colander set over a bowl and let the liquid strain through.
To remove the clams from their shells, begin by removing the foot part and then discard the stomach (you will recognise this as the solid mass of mussel as opposed to the disjointed belly that is half attached). Wash the shells for serving the clams. Slice the clams about the same size as the diced vegetables.
Preheat the grill on a medium setting.
Add the diced vegetable mix to a saucepan with the remaining butter and a small sprinkling of sea salt. Allow the vegetables to sweat down over a medium heat until softened, then add the cooking liquid from the clams and boil rapidly until reduced by half. Then, add the clams and remove the pan from the heat.
Spoon the clams and vegetables back into the shells. Sprinkle over the Parmesan crumb mix and grill until a light golden brown colour. Serve immediately.