So Sian returns from the allotment last evening with some leeks, grown from tiny plants sown in Essex by my sister, nurtured in one of S’s raised beds and sent down to the Allotment some months ago. A great result now I am wondering how to cook them. I think this recipe
Clams with leek, fennel and parsley
Though you could add a twirl of al dente spaghetti or linguine to this dish, it is the fragrant, briny broth that delights – better with a crusty loaf and a spoon.
2 tbsp olive oil
1 small onion, finely diced
1 large leek, trimmed and finely diced
Salt and pepper
1 tsp crushed fennel seeds
2 garlic cloves, minced
A pinch of red pepper flakes
1 kg small clams, scrubbed
A splash of white wine
2 tbsp chopped parsley
1 tbsp chopped spring onions/Lemon Wedges
1 In a wide, deep pot, heat the olive oil over a medium-high heat. Add the onion and leek and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened – about 5 minutes.
2 Season with salt and pepper, then add the fennel seeds, garlic, and red pepper flakes. Add the clams, turn the heat to high, and stir well with a wooden spoon to coat.
3 Splash in the wine, put on the lid, and continue to cook until all the clams have opened – about 5 to 6 minutes.
4 Stir in the parsley and spring onions. Spoon the clams and broth into bowls. Serve with lemon wedges.
One Good Dish by David Tanis (Artisan Books)