Clams Al Forno
Delicious and quite simple, these clams bake in a savory brew of tomato, wine, garlic, hot pepper, and onion. Johanne Killeen prepares her Clams Al Forno in the restaurant’s signature wood-burning oven; for the home cook, this means using the highest oven heat you have.
- Littleneck (hard shell) Clams - 36 to 40, cleaned
- Onions - 2 large, thinly sliced
- Garlic Cloves - 3, minced
- Jalapeno Peppers - 1, seeded, deribbed, and minced
- Red Pepper Flakes - 1/2 teaspoon, dried
- Tomatoes - 1-1/2 cups, canned, drained and chopped
- Dry white wine - 3/4 cup
- Water - 1/2 cup
- Unsalted Butter - 8 tablespoons (1 stick), cut into bits
- Scallions - 3, julienned
- Lemon - 1, cut into 6 wedges
Make sure the clams are tightly shut; discard any which are open. Preheat the oven to 500 F, or as high as it will go. Place the clams in a single layer in six 6- or 8-inch individual ovenproof casserole bowls. Scatter the onions, garlic, jalapeno, and red pepper flakes over the clams. Divide the tomatoes among the dishes and place over the clams. Divide the wine and water among the dishes. Roast, uncovered, for 9 minutes. Turn the clams, then roast 9 to 10 minutes longer, until the clams pop open. Discard any which remain closed or nearly closed.
To serve: Place the bowls on individual serving plates. Garnish each bowl with the scallions and a wedge of lemon.
Adapted from the Al Forno cookbook, Cucina Simpatica.