Wednesday, April 28, 2010
Clam city baby
So, here's the thing about clams. They're alive. That can be intimidating. But clams are also delicious and kind of hard to mess up.
I had a conversation with The Boyfriend about eating clams raw on the half shell (which I haven't been able to bring myself to do). He said that it was gross because they're still alive. I mentioned to The Boyfriend (who has a degree in Japanese and lived in Japan for almost a year) that the fanciest of Japanese cuisine has living and moving dishes. Like, a carp that still has the muscles moving, or the tiny fish you drain then dump into a vinaigrette and swallow whole. They say you can feel them wriggling all the way down. He said that was gross.
Anyways, because I am a timid American cook, I took my baby clams, half shucked them (I removed half the shell), covered them in a breading compost of panko, aged white cheddar, flour, and salt then fried them in a generous portion of bacon fat (rendered from that morning's bacon). It kind of creeped me out that after I'd taken half of it's exoskeleton the clams still recoiled from the panko mix that I sprinkled onto them. That being said, I have had few things as delicious as that. Like, it was totally worth scraping my little finger in the cheese grater.
Apparently clams are really high in iron. Like, the same portion of clam meat has as much iron as the same portion of beef liver. And if I remember correctly, the liver of any creature is pretty irony.
Another nice thing about clams is that it's still easy and affordable to find wild clams at the market. More and more fish are being bred in captivity for the fish market. I don't view this as a bad thing because I believe that fish should swim free so much as they don't get to eat all the delicious things they would in the wild. Though clams eat... never mind.
In any case, I think I'll still wait a while before I sink my dainty teeth into living muscle, and enjoy this treat all fried up in bacon.
The Almost Daily Sarah