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Razor clam mezze

Razor clam mezze

These razor clam mezze are a dinner party starter that’s guaranteed to impress.

Rachel Khoo

Rachel Khoo's Kitchen Notebook: Cosmopolitan Cook

BBC Lifestyle

Ingredients

• 12 razor clams

Crispy rice and hot sauce clams:

• 50g brown rice, uncooked
• 2 tbsp olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
• 4 garlic cloves, finely minced
• 1 small onion, finely chopped
• 1 small red chilli, deseeded and finely chopped
• 8 cherry tomatoes, roughly chopped
• 1 small red pepper, deseeded and finely chopped
• 1 tbsp red wine vinegar
• 1 tsp dried mint
• 2 sprigs of fresh parsley

Tzatziki and pomegranate clams:

• ½ lemon
• 75g Greek yogurt
• 1 small garlic clove, minced
• ½ cucumber, Lebanese or peeled ridge if you can get it
• 4 tbsp pomegranate seeds

Preparation method

  1. Bring a large pan of water to the boil. Set up a bowl of cold water with ice nearby. Drop three clams into the boiling water at a time. Fish them out almost immediately with a pair of tongs and drop them straight into the cold water. They should open but not cook. Repeat with the remaining clams. Use half for the crispy rice recipe and half for the tzatziki recipe.

Crispy rice and hot sauce clams:

  1. Cook the rice as per packet instructions. Drain and leave to cool and dry out in the sieve. Preheat the grill.
  2. Take six of the clams, pull out of their shells and prep them. Wash and dry the shells and keep aside to serve. Use a pair of scissors to cut the black sack out of the clam, remove the ‘beak’ then chop into thumbnail sized pieces.
  3. In a large non-stick frying pan add a tablespoon of olive oil, garlic, onion, chilli and tomatoes and chopped peppers. Fry on a medium heat until the tomatoes and onions are soft (but not brown) for about 15 minutes. Blend with the red wine vinegar to a smooth paste.
  4. Wipe the frying pan and add a tablespoon of olive oil. Heat the oil and add the brown rice. Fry for about 10 minutes or until golden and crisp. Add the clams for the last couple of minutes.
  5. Spread some of the sauce on the bottom of the shell, followed by the crispy rice and clams and some pepper. Sprinkle with some dried mint and parsley. Drizzle with olive oil. Repeat another five times to make six shell halves.

Tzatziki and pomegranate clams:

  1. Pull the clams out of their shells and prep them. Wash and dry the shells and keep aside to serve. Use a pair of scissors to cut the black sack out of the clam, remove the ‘beak’ then chop into thumbnail sized pieces. Set aside in a bowl and squeeze a little lemon juice over the top.
  2. Mix together the yoghurt, garlic, a pinch of salt with a squeeze of lemon (to taste). Place in a bottle with a nozzle.
  3. Cut the cucumber in half lengthways and scoop out the seeds. Cut into fine julienne strips on a mandolin or by hand.
  4. Place two or three blobs of the garlic yoghurt along the clam shell. Alternate with clam pieces. Garnish with a little cucumber and some of the pomegranate seeds.