Razor Clams with Bacon and Garlic

Razor clams are growing in popularity and can be found at good fishmongers. They’re available from September to the end April in the U.K. (months with the letter R in them). They should be alive when purchased, any opened shells should close when lightly tapped, discard any that don’t close or have a broken shell (be careful as their shells are brittle). When preparing rinse under plenty of running tap water to remove any sand. Be careful not to overcook the clams as they can become rubbery.

Portions: 4 as a starter or light meal with accompaniment

Preparation: 15 minutes

Cooking: 10 minutes

Ingredients

To Steam

  • 24 Razor Clams
  • 2 garlic cloves, bruised with the back of a knife
  • 1 small chilli
  • 3-4 sprigs lemon thyme
  • 100ml white wine

Bacon and Garlic

  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 6 rashers streaky bacon, cut into small lardons
  • 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1/2 tsp dried chilli flakes
  • 3 tbsp lemon thyme leaves, finely chopped
  • 25g parmesan grated
  • 75g fresh breadcrumbs

To Cook

  • 3 tbsp olive oil

Method

Razor CLams

  1. Rinse the razor clams under running water until all the sand has been rinsed out.
  2. Place the razor clams in a saucepan with the wine, garlic, thyme and chilli. Place over a high heat, cover with a lid and cook for 3-4 minutes until all the clams have opened (shake the pan regularly). Discard any clams that refuse to open.
  3. Drain the clams and remove the flesh from the shell reserving the shells. Remove the black stomach with knife. Slice the clams into 5-6 pieces and return the meat to the shells. Place on a tray suitable for placing under the grill.

Bacon and Garlic

  1. Heat the oil in a frying pan over a moderate high heat. Add the chilli and bacon to the pan and fry until the bacon is just cooked. Stir in the garlic and thyme and remove from the pan from the heat. In a bowl mix together the the breadcrumbs and parmesan until well combined. Distribute the bacon and garlic mixture over the clams followed by the breadcrumbs.

To Cook

  1. Preheat a grill to high. Drizzle the olive oil over the clams and place under the preheated grill, cook for 3-5 minutes until the breadcrumbs are golden brown and hot. Serve.