Sunday Independent (Ireland) - Life - - APPETITES -

Serves 4-6 as ta­pas, or 2 as a main course. You will need: 1kg (2 ¼ lbs) fresh clams in their shells 3 ta­ble­spoons ex­tra-vir­gin olive oil 1 small onion, finely chopped 1 clove gar­lic, finely chopped 1 pinch saf­fron ¼ tea­spoon smoked pa­prika 50ml (2fl oz) dry sherry such as fino, or white wine 1 ta­ble­spoon tomato paste 2 ta­ble­spoons roughly chopped pars­ley Crusty white bread, to serve First, check that the clams are all closed, and dis­card any that stay open when tapped on a work sur­face. To clean the clams, scrub the shells, then place them in a bowl or a sink of cold wa­ter and let them soak for half an hour. This should help get rid of some of the sand, if there is any.

Heat the ex­tra-vir­gin olive oil in a wide pan over a medium heat, then add the finely

chopped onion and the finely chopped gar­lic and cook them for about 5 min­utes un­til they are light and golden.

Add the pinch of saf­fron, the smoked pa­prika, the dry sherry or the white wine, which­ever you’re us­ing, the tomato paste, the roughly chopped pars­ley and the drained clams. Cover with a lid and cook for about 2-3 min­utes un­til all the clams have com­pletely opened. Dis­card any that don’t. Tip into serv­ing bowls and serve with the crusty white bread.

This recipe can be halved or mul­ti­plied depend­ing on how many you’re feed­ing.

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