342. Thai Clam Pot (Low Fat)
Clams are surprisingly difficult to find. On Saturday morning, I asked Dad to take me to Prahran Market (the only place where you can ALWAYS find clams). However, he thought it was too far, and said we'd be able to find clams in Kew or on Victoria Parade (the Vietnamese district), both of which are much closer.
Well, there were no clams in Kew. (But on the upside, I did buy the most fabulous egg and bacon baguette at the wonderful Convent Bakery on High street. The baker also gave us a free loaf of light rye and a latté. Sweet!)
egg & bacon baguette (emphatically NOT low fat)
We then headed to Victoria Parade, and started looking at their fishmongers. There were mussels, crabs, pippies, all sorts of fish... but no freaking clams! It was only at the third fishmongers we visited that we found clams. I didn't think looked like clams, but Dad assured me these were clams - the kind that he used to eat growing up in Malaysia. And seeing as I was making an Asian dish, I thought they'd be appropriate.
So I took them home, and soaked them, then drained them, ready to use.
This dish is pretty straightforward. Cook noodles in boiling water and set aside. Then heat through garlic, spring onion and dried chilli in a little oil, before adding sake and water, allowing it to boil and then chuck in the clams. I'm used to cooking clams until they open, so I hovered near the stove, watching the boiling liquid, waiting for the clams to open. 5 minutes passed, and not a single one opened. Shit. I got more and more nervous, until Dad came in and told me, "They're not supposed to open, don't overcook them!". Whoops. I guess I'm just not used to handling Asian clams.
So I quickly finished off the dish by taking the clams off the heat and adding fish sauce and coriander, and tossing the whole lot together.
thai clam pot
It was very tasty, although opening each clam individually proved to be a bit annoying. (This is ok if you're eating a big bowl of chilli clams with no accompaniment, but not when you're eating them with noodles.) Next time I make this dish, I'm sticking to ordinary vongole clams!