Welcome guest blogger Cherie Scott, who made the improbable journey from her birth place in India to a small town in Maine (with stops in Vancouver and New York City), where she now writes her aptly-named blog Mumbai to Maine. There she reconnects with her Indian-Portuguese roots through family recipes and nostalgic anecdotes – it’s a culinary journey across cultures and the Atlantic.
I came up with this tasty dish as I was driving my daughter to school one morning. As a full-time working mom I always struggle with having to make quick but delicious meals for my husband and daughter. We are all starving when we get home from work and after-school activities. I feel the pressure to deliver dinner with flare and flavor. Over the years, I’ve learned that a well-stocked pantry and fridge are truly my best friends in the kitchen! And, it’s comforting to know that I can come home to them and they always make me feel like a fabulous gourmet chef.
I had a package of D’Artagnan chorizo in my fridge and I knew it would pair well with seafood – my Portuguese roots always re-surface when I’m on the spot!
On my way back to work after dropping off my daughter I noticed a sign on the road: Little Neck Clams $3.99/lb. What goes better with chorizo then fresh clams? I could almost picture myself opening up the package of the chorizo, bursting with fresh garlic, paprika and perfectly seasoned pork waiting to rub shoulders with those fresh briny clams.
I made a mental note to stop by our local bakery after work and pick up some crusty bread for dunking and a bottle of white wine. I discreetly shoved 4 pounds of clams in the work fridge and shut the door with a smile on my face. I knew the next 8 hours were going to feel like a year. I could hardly wait to get home and chop up that chorizo and get cookin’.
Here is what you need to make this fabulous dish:
¼ cup olive oil
2 large yellow onions, diced or 6 shallots or 1 large Spanish onion – your preference
6 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 package of D’Artagnan Chorizo
1 bunch of scallions – mostly the greens, I save the onion parts for another dish
1 tube of tomato paste (my husband does not like the texture of tomatoes in a dish, so I use the paste)
1 teaspoon of cayenne powder
4 lbs of Little Neck Clams
1 cup of white wine – Gewurztraminer is our go-to; we drink the rest of the bottle with the meal. It complements spicy food perfectly.
¼ cup water
Crusty bread for dunking
1. Sauté the diced onions in the olive oil until light brown.
2. Add the finely chopped garlic and sauté until golden brown, not burnt.
3. Add the chopped chorizo and scallions and sauté for 5 minutes on medium heat.
4. Add the cayenne powder and the tomato paste and give it a good stir. Cook for 2 minutes on medium heat until the garlic, onion and chorizo mixture are coated with the tomato paste.
5. Add the clams and make sure to stir well with tongs.
6. Add the wine and deglaze the pan, stir well.
7. Now add the water, bring to a low boil, cover and simmer on low heat for 5-7 minutes, until all the clams are opened.
Serve immediately with the crustiest bread for dunking and a chilled glass of your favorite white wine.