Poor man’s clam sauce

I say poor man’s clam sauce only because there are a few more expensive ingredients missing- I’ll list everything below but if it says (optional) and it happens to be pay week; go for it!

Clam sauce:

Whole Stick of butter
Olive oil
Minced garlic
Minced Chalet (optional)
Anchovy Paste (optional)
White Wine
Chicken Broth
Whole Clams (3 cans)
Fresh Clams (optional)
Clam juice (optional)
Red Pepper Flakes
Black or White Pepper
Grated Parmesan (optional)
Lemon Juice

If you’re Italian you might see a red flag – there is an unspoken rule to never mix seafood with cheese – thankfully I’m mostly Polish and its listed as “optional” (but highly recommended).

IMG_2330Melt the stick of butter in a sauce pan along with the olive oil. When heated add the garlic and chalet if you opted for it (you can substitute onion). Crush some dried oregano and red pepper flakes – add it to the mix. When the garlic turns golden add the chicken broth and clam juice if you opted and let it simmer for a minute. Add white wine to taste. Be careful not to burn the garlic at this point!

Whats the difference between Black and White pepper? The color! When you’re cooking light food like this its best to use light colored ingredients. This way, guests aren’t turned off by black bits floating in their food. Thats really all it is!

Add your white pepper, minced fresh parsley and about a 6 inch line of anchovy paste if you opted. Anchovy paste comes in a tube in the “Ethnic” section of your favorite grocery store.

Thanks to the cultural influences of my wife I’ve been introduced to “Squid sauce” which would be a great substitute for anchovy paste. Each of these ingredients accentuate the “by the sea” flavor.

IMG_2333Drain 2 of the 3 cans of whole clams, using the juice from just one. If you opted to use clam juice in the previous step add the canned juice to taste.

After the sauce comes back up to a simmer add the parmesan and lemon juice to taste.

Bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer for 5 minutes. Serve over your favorite pasta. I used perciatelli because I think its great for juicy sauces like this one.


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