Clam soup Italian style
Here is one of my mom’s best soup recipes.
40 littleneck clams, the smaller the better
1/3 cup olive oil
1/2 cup finely chopped onion
4 cloves garlic, finely minced
8 finely chopped anchovies
6 basil leaves, finely chopped
3 Tablespoons finely minced parsley
1 teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon crushed fennel seeds
1 teaspoon saffron chopped optional
1 6 ounce can tomato paste
1 cup dry white wine
2 cups water
salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1. Rinse the clams under cold running water to remove all sand from the shells.
2. Heat the oil in a large kettle and add the onion and garlic. Cook, stirring, until the onion is wilted. Adding the anchovies, basil, parsley, oregano, fennel and if you choose, saffron. Cook, stirring about 5 minutes. Add the tomato paste, wine and water and stir.
3. Cover and cook, stirring with a wooden spoon and shaking the kettle occasionally, until the clams open, five to ten minutes. Add salt and pepper. Serve in hot bowls with hot Italian bread. (writers note… when daddy was alive every single plate had to be heated up until almost boiling. My sister as soon as she married started doing that. My mom and i once in awhile do that.)