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Thursday, December 18, 2014

Jackknife and Rocket Stilettos

Where I thought I may have lost it, I found Inspiration by my side again during Stiletto night..
Even my fishmonger participated, laughing with me about the live crawfish looking more like pets than a meal while a long line of customers impatiently waited their turn.
Hey, it's my evening.. anything goes!
She seemed intrigued at my determination to buy the only jackknife clams on the stall, thinking I had cooked them plenty of times and knew exactly what my results would be... then she remembered she was talking to me.. the one always trying new things in awkward ways... with piment!
I targetted jackknife clams tonight, hoping there would be some available because I've been told about them a number of times without really knowing what they tasted like or how to prepare them.  They are naughty awkward little fellows.  They are sold live and seem to drool with their tongues hanging out whenever they sense something interesting about to happen.  They are quite meaty for shellfish as opposed to a.. say.. scallop or clam, where the weight is more shell than flesh.  Here you have a 50-50 flesh to shell wight ratio.. if not 60-40, which is quite amazing.. since they are sold by the kg.
The perfect music to accompany my evening couldn't be anything else but Queen, A Day at the Races, followed by A Knight at the Opera.
Serves 1 (hey didn't I mention it's Stiletto Night?)
500g - 1 lb Jackknife Clams (about 25)
For pan fry:
1 extra large garlic clove, grated
juice from 1/2 lemon
2 tsp Rouille Spices (paprika, chile powder, garlic, coriander, saffron)
1 Tbsp olive oil
few cracks black pepper
2 Tbsp chopped parsley
For salad:
2 handfuls rinsed arugula (rocket)
1 small shallot, minced
1 drizzle balsamic vinegar
few sundried tomatoes from a jar
pinch fleur de sel
few cracks black pepper
drizzle walnut oil (or spray if you have it)
For the extra mile:
some Selles sur Cher raw milk asked goat cheese
some crusty "campagne" bread
1.  Place the live Jackknife Clams in some water with a tsp of coarse sea salt for about 15 to 30 minutes.  During this time they will release any sand they have trapped inside.  This step is quite crucial.. unless you enjoy grinding your teeth on some sandy goodness.
2.  Drain, rinse, and soak in fresh water for another 15 minutes just to get the last bit of sand out.  Drain and rinse again.
3.  During all the soaking waiting time, prepare the pan fry sauce.  Stir all the ingredients together in a bowl.  When the jackknife clams have finished draining, spoon this mixture into each one of them.
4.  Prepare the salad by tossing all the ingredients together.
5.  Cook the jackknives on a very hot skillet for about 5 minutes, stirring from time to time so they are evenly cooked.
Serve immediately.

For a happy ending my way, don't forget the goat cheese coarse after the "dégustation."
It is the cherry on top.   A reminder that after a blissful meal, paradise is waiting..

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1 comment:

  1. délicieuse recette
    Je n'ai eu que des compliments!
    j'ai accompagné le plat de fines tranches de pain d'épice aux figues... un vrai régal