Flash in the Pan: Clam and Andouille Pot

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This pot of steamed clams is incredibly quick, simple and cheap. Use whatever clams you like--fat cherrystones are delicious, but the smaller littlenecks are pictured above. Same goes for the sausage, although I like the way spicy andouille perks up the clam broth. In the summer, use linguica (the spicy Portuguese sausage popular in New England), and also put in quartered corn on the cob and parboiled red potatoes, and you've got an ersatz New England clam bake.

But this simpler version is delicious, and requires no chopping other than smashing the garlic cloves. Buy some good bread to sop up the copious broth. Since clams give off a very salty liquor, don't salt the dish until the very end, after you've tasted the broth to see if it's necessary.

Clam and Andouille Pot

Yield: 2 servings
If you're using littleneck clams, serve 20-25 each. Cherry stones are larger, and you could get away with 15-20 each. Since clams are cheap and healthy, I always err towards a larger serving size.

1 tablespoon olive oil
4 cloves garlic, smashed
40 clams, scrubbed
2 andouille sausages, sliced
zest of 1 lemon
1 tablespoon chile flakes
1 cup dry white wine
salt and pepper, if necessary
bread, for serving

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large saucepan over medium heat, warm the olive oil. Add the garlic, and saute until fragrant. Add the remaining ingredients, place the lid on the pot, and place pot in the oven. Cook for 30 minutes, or until most clams have opened. Discard clams that have not opened, and taste broth for seasoning. If it needs salt, add a pinch, as well as a generous pinch of black pepper. Serve with bread for sopping up the broth.


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