These Steamed Clams In White Wine And Garlic are a favorite Greek Meze dish. Cooked together with olive oil and served with a squeeze of fresh lemon!
They're very easy and quick to make loaded with freshness and sea flavor. Serve these with a glass of Ouzo and lots of crusty bread to dip in, and it will be like visiting a Greek Taverna by the sea.
For these steamed clams recipe, I'm using Venus Clams, or as we call them in Greek Gialisteres. They're larger than most clams. They're also meaty, delicious, and amongst the most-favorited clam varieties in Greece.
How To Prepare Clams For Steaming
NOTE: Clams should be closed when you buy them. If any of them is open gently tap it and wait for it to close. If it doesn't that means it's dead and you should discard it.
When it comes to cooking clams the cleaning process is the one thing that you need to pay a bit of extra attention to. Clams need to soak in water for at least an hour at room temperature so they will start to release the sand they have inside of them.
Then rub them a bit under running tap water to remove any sand from the outer shells. There are even special brushes for this. Though most clams are usually already cleaned when you buy them.
An extra step I do especially for this clam variety is to cook them in some water first. Just until they open. Then remove the clams from the pan and pass that water through a fine-mesh sieve covered with muslin or cotton cloth. This way you can be 100% sure there will be no sand left in the final dish.
Clams that do not open when steamed are spoiled and you should discard them.
How To Make Steamed Clams With White Wine
First, saute onion and plenty of garlic in olive oil. Once softened and caramelized add the steamed clams back to the pan and pour in the wine. Cook for a minute then pour the strained clam water into the pan, add the parsley, cover, and cook for 3-4 minutes. And you are ready to serve!
SERVE THEM WITH 🠯
Serve as a Meze, with either one of these delicious Greek Meze Dips: Skordalia (garlic mashed potato dip), Melitzanosalata (eggplant dip), or Tarama (fish roe dip). Or serve as a starter to seafood theme dinner before a Greek fish soup or a Grilled Sea Bream!
Simple Steamed Clams In White Wine And Garlic
- 1 kilogram / 2.2 pound Cherrystone, Manila, or Venus clams
- ½ medium-sized onion minced
- 4 large garlic cloves thinly sliced
- 4 tablespoons olive oil
- ¼ cup white wine
- 1 tablespoon parsley chopped
- 1 lemon to serve with
Prepare The Clams:
- First, make sure that all the clams are alive. If any of the clams is open tap it on your counter to see if it closes. If it doesn't that means the clam is dead and you shouldn't cook it.
- Place them all in a large bowl filled with cold water. Let them stand for about an hour out of the fridge to release most of the sand from their insides.
- Gently rub off any sand or dirt from the shells of the clams under running water. They usually are already clean when you buy them. There are also specific cleaning brushes for doing this.
- Transfer all clams to a strainer.
Cook The Clams:
- Add clams to a large frying pan or skillet (preferably one that comes with a lid as we're going to cover the clams later on).
- Pour 1 cup of water into the pan and bring to a boil over high heat. Wait for a minute for the clams to open. And once they do turn the heat off and carefully transfer them to a plate.
- Strain the water from the pan through a fine-mesh sieve covered with cotton or muslin cloth. And keep that water aside. This is done to ensure there are no remnants of sand within the clams.
- In the same pan or skillet add the olive oil and heat over medium heat.
- Add the onion and garlic and cook until very soft and caramelized.
- Carefully transfer the clams back to the pan, pour the wine and wait for a minute.
- Then pour the strained clam water you saved and season with a little bit of salt and freshly ground pepper.
- Add the chopped parsley, put the lid on, and cook for about 3-4 minutes.
- Serve clams with pieces of lemon. Squeezing some fresh lemon on each clam you're about to eat!
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