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Portuguese Clam and Sausage Stew

Use fresh Mexican (not dried Spanish) chorizo, or substitute hot Italian sausage. While Asian fish sauce may seem out of place here, it's a trick to add an indescribable element of flavor.

Ingredients:

  • 1 Tbs. olive oil
  • 1/2 lb. fresh pork chorizo
  • 1 small yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 can (14 1/2 oz.) chopped tomatoes
  • 1 Tbs. Asian fish sauce (optional)
  • 1 can (15 oz.) garbanzo beans, drained and
      rinsed
  • 24 small hard-shell clams, scrubbed
  • 1/3 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

Directions:

In a wide sauté pan or fry pan over medium-high heat, warm the olive oil and crumble in the sausage meat (discard the casings). Stir the sausage until it breaks up and starts to brown, then add the onion. Cook, stirring, until the sausage is browned and the onion is softened, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute. Stir in the tomatoes, 1 cup water and the fish sauce, then add the garbanzo beans. Let come to a boil, then reduce the heat, cover and simmer until the sauce thickens, about 15 minutes.

Add the clams and shake the pan to coat the clams with the sauce; increase the heat to medium. Cover the pan and cook until the clams open, about 10 minutes (discard any that do not open). Stir in the parsley and serve. Serves 4 to 6.

Adapted from Braises & Stews, by Tori Ritchie (Chronicle Books, 2007).