“A tavola non si invecchia”. - Italian proverb (At the table with good friends and family you do not become old).

Sharing authentic Italian recipes entrusted upon me through the privilege of being invited into many Italian homes and kitchen’s abroad. I travel, cook, eat, share, learn and photograph my experiences, a truly soul enriching journey. There are now over 100 recipes on this blog to search from. I am a Melbourne born girl who now resides in Pietrasanta, Italy. Sharing my love for food and all things Italian with you. I am not a professionally trained chef, just a person that really loves cooking and has made my passion my reality! Through talent and drive I now work as a private chef in some of the most prestigious private villa`s here in Tuscany, Italy!

Sunday, March 20, 2016

guazzetto di vongole e cozze. sautéd clams and mussels

This is one of the most simplest dishes to prepare and one that packs a wow factor when served at the table. Not only is it simple, it is amazingly delicious and does not run the wallet empty. This is one of my favourite seafood dishes to make as I love the ritual of sitting at the table over a good bottle of cold white wine (one with slight bubbles is even better), and sucking the mussel and clam shells dry, then to pile the empty shells mile high. I would have to say that this is one of my signature dishes and one that is consistently requested, at home and at work (also my rosticciana, click here for the recipe http://karasitaliankitchen.blogspot.it/2016/01/rosticciana-roasted-pork-ribs.html). 
In fact I have had people video me making this quick and no fuss dish, as it really is amazing seeing the beautiful shells open to absorb the fragrant flavours of the wine juices.
When eating in restaurants I really do like to try new things and generally order more complicated plates that I don't typically make at home, however this dish is one that I willingly order on a sunny day (especially if dining seaside). Some of my fondest memories have been enjoyed over a bowl of these babies.
With a little preparation and organisation  you can have this dish ready in less than ten minuets. It really is a win win plate! Serve with crusty bread to soak up the super tasty broth like juices!
What you will need (this will serve two as a main course, or four people as a entree):
1: One kilo of fresh mussels 
2: 300 grams of fresh clams (or buy 50/50 however mussels are much cheaper)
3: Two small ripe cherry tomatoes 
4: 2/3 gloves of garlic
5: Handful of fresh flat leaf parsley
6: Rind of one lemon and juice
7: 1/4 cup of white wine (then enjoy the rest)
8: A teaspoon of Sicilian chili flakes (taste to test the hotness)
9: A good splash of extra virgin olive oil
10: Black cracked pepper
How to make:
1: Pre prepare all of the ingredients:
Chop parsley, dice garlic and cut tomatoes into small pieces
Remove two big pieces of lemon rind
Have your fish munger clean and wash the mussels very well (if eating within two hours). Wash the clams by placing in a bowl with water and swirl in a circular motion to remove sand, then strain in a colander 
2: Place the olive oil, parsley, garlic, tomato, lemon rind and chilli flakes into a large frypan (I usually prepare this an hour ahead of time so the oil has time to infuse with the flavours, however this is not necessary). See picture directly below 
3: Heat the pan on a medium heat and sauté the ingredients until the tomato has softened a little
4: Add the clams and mussels to the hot pan and mix around to coat in flavour. Add the wine 
5: Cook for approximately 5-8 minutes until all of the shells have opened (disregard unopened shells). You can cover with a lid however I use a large diameter fry pan and find that I do not need to cover
6: Just before serving add some lemon juice, parsley and cracked pepper
7: Serve immediately with crusty bread 
The base ingredients marinating in the fry-pan
 #vongole #cozze #clams #mussels #seafood #pesce