My family loves seafood and living on an island we are privileged with an abundance of fresh shellfish year round. I made this tasty dish for my husband’s birthday dinner with the fresh seafood we picked up during our trip to the Hamptons on Saturday. Accuracy of quantities and measures are not really important for this recipe, it is more about the method and using ingredients you like and that you have fun making it and eating it. 🙂 ~Maria~
Maria’s Shellfish Delight
- 2 – 3 tablespoons of olive oil
- 1 medium sweet onion chopped (I like vidalia)
- 4 – 8 garlic cloves minced (we like a lot of garlic, but if you don’t, use less or take it out all together)
- 1 cup of chorizo cut into 1/4″ cubes – we like Portuguese chorizo but if you don’t or can’t find it you can substitute prosciutto, ham or even bacon – it’s about the salt and a little fat
- 1 medium tomato chopped
- red pepper flakes, salt and pepper to taste
- 1 red and 1 green bell pepper cut in half horizontally and then sliced into 1/2″ strips
- 1 1/2 cups dry white wine
- 2 lbs of mussels cleaned
- 2 dozen little neck clams cleaned
- 1/2 – 3/4 lb of shrimp shelled, cleaned and deveined
- chopped italian parsley
Tip: To clean the clams and mussels, I take off any “beard” they may have and then scrub the shells with a hard brush. I then place them in a bowl with ice water and add a about a tablespoon of corn meal. The theory is they eat the cornmeal and spit out the sand they are holding inside the shells. I don’t know if it is true or not, but I do know that I never have a problem with crunching into grains of sand when I’m eating my shellfish! You should buy the shellfish as close to serving as possible and always keep it properly refrigerated until ready to cook.
- In a heavy pot (I like my cast iron dutch oven) sautee the onion in the olive oil till slightly translucent.
- Add the chorizo and render down, then add garlic and cook for a minute or two being careful not to burn the garlic
- Add tomatoes, red pepper flakes, salt and pepper to season the and and cook them at medium heat until they break down and thicken slightly
- Turn up the heat to medium high, add the peppers and cook for about 1 minute
- Add the wine, and clams and mussels and cover for about 5 minutes or until the clams and muscles just start to open (do not over cook)
- Add the shrimp, cover and cook until they are pink (do not over cook)
Sprinkle the parsley over the top when ready to serve. I serve it right in the pot with a simple garden salad on the side and some crusty bread to dunk in the sauce created by the wine, tomatoes and shellfish juices.