We are so pleased to have our good friend Russ from the The Domestic Man on our blog to guest post for us today! We love Russ and his whole family, personal friends of ours who frequently attend our Meetups. Russ is an extremely talented cook, and a frequent joke in our family is that something we prepare is “almost as good as something Russ would do!” We’re really excited to see his upcoming book, The Ancestral Table: Traditional Recipes for a Paleo Lifestyle. Trust us, you REALLY want to pre-order this book! It’s full of exotic flavors and beautiful photography that is so characteristic of Russ and his style. We have been privileged enough to get a sneak peek at the book, and we have personally tasted the recipes prepared by Russ himself. This recipe for Steamed Littleneck Clams is a wonderful example of his elegant, simple style that is easy to make your own with different flavor combinations. Take it away Russ!
Lately, I’ve been on a personal quest to turn more people on to seafood. Besides the fact that it’s both delicious and full of nutrients, it can often be dead-simple to prepare. Take this recipe, for example, which requires only 15 minutes from start to finish – 5 minutes to scrub the clams, 5 minutes to prep the melted butter, and 5 minutes to steam the clams. Cooking clams at home is also much more economical than ordering them at a restaurant; you can often find and steam clams yourself for a fraction of the cost you’d pay out in town.
Clams in particular are especially nutritious. Pound-for-pound, they have more iron than beef liver, and they’re high in Vitamin B12, Vitamin A, calcium, selenium and potassium. They are an excellent source of protein, and are especially healthful when considering that they have Omega-3 fatty acids and a much lower contamination profile than other ocean-based sources of Omega-3 (like salmon). Have I convinced you yet?
Unlike other seafood, farm-raised clams (and mussels) are preferred over wild-caught clams; they are raised on ropes suspended above the sea floor, which makes them less gritty than wild clams dredged from the ocean floor. Dredging can also damage the ocean’s ecosystem.
- 50ct littleneck clams (no larger than 2" across)
- 1 cup white wine
- 4 tbsp melted butter or ghee
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- lemon wedges to serve
- Run the clams under cool water and scrub clean with a stiff brush, discarding any that are open and won’t close when tapped on a firm surface; rinse and set aside.
- In a stockpot, add the wine and bring to a boil on med/high heat. Gently add the clams to the boiling wine, then cover and steam until fully opened, about 5 minutes.
- While the clams are steaming, melt the butter or ghee in a microwave and add the minced garlic. Distribute into small bowls.
- Serve immediately with lemon wedges and cute, tiny forks if you have them. Be sure to pour the steaming liquid into your serving bowl to help the clams stay nice and warm.
Bear in mind that this is only a baseline recipe, and you can add other ingredients to spice things up. For example, try adding garlic, shallots, parsley, or red chili pepper flakes to the wine to bring out new flavors in the clams!
Connect with Russ:
[author] [author_image timthumb=’on’]http://paleoparents.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/01/russ-square.jpg[/author_image] [author_info]Russ Crandall is the talented home chef behind The Domestic Man, a leading food blog in the Paleo, gluten-free, and whole foods communities. In his 20s he suffered a number of life-threatening illnesses, was diagnosed with a rare autoimmune condition–and was sent home with a lifetime’s worth of medications. Disenchanted with modern medicine, Russ started searching for his own answers and quickly discovered that eating a gluten-free, nutrient-rich diet instantly alleviated most of the medical issues that had plagued him for years.[/author_info] [/author]