They are my inspiration! We usually speak every other week or so. Conversation centers on my boys, sisters, family and food!
In a loud, concerned, almost piercing voice, my tita’s usually ask, “Y LOS NINOS? ESTAN COMIENDO?? TENEIS QUE ALIMENTAR!!! AY MIS NINOS… AY MIS NINOS… PORQUE TENEIS QUE ESTAR TAN LEJOS?! (and the boys? are they eating? oh my boys… oh my boys… why do they have to be so far away?)
Which I alway’s reply, “Ya Tita, estan bien… si… estan comiendo. (they’re ok… yes.. they’re eating)
That’s just the way it’s been for my family. Alway’s about food. Making sure we’re eating well, enough, and by God, growing! So of course, our conversation usually turns to what they’re cooking and what I’m cooking and me jotting down family recipes.
Last week, I visited our local Asian market and was ecstatic to find small clams, perfect for Spanish recipes. Here in Iowa, I’ve only been able to find little neck clams. Little neck clams are way too big for dishes such as almejas con arroz or almejas a la marinera. (If you can’t find small clams in your area, make sure to visit your Asian grocer.)
After finding these clams, I called my mami and we later called my aunts in Spain for the families recipe of almejas con arroz. This is Abuela Rora’s favorite dish and one she makes every time we visit. Her craft in the kitchen is beyond words and one that I hope to take after.
Almejas Con Arroz
Serves 6 adults (and 2 toddlers
- 2 cups clams
- 3 tbls Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 1 large white onion
- 4-5 garlic cloves
- 1 small bunch of fresh parsley (about 5 tbls)
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 cup dry (fino) sherry (Spanish white wine, such as Pedro Romero, a pale dry sherry, fino)
- 1 1/2 cups small or medium grain white rice
- 4 cups of water
- Salt to taste
- In a large sauce pan, heat 3 tbls of Extra Virgin Olive Oil. Add the onion and 4-5 whole cloves of garlic. Saute until the onion is translucent, not browned and the garlic has browned a bit on the outside, (the inside should still be raw) about 5-6 minutes.
- Add the onion and garlic to a food processor or blender.
- Add the small bunch of parsley in the same pan as the onion and garlic. Saute until just wilted and transfer to the food processor or blender.
- Puree the onion, garlic, and parsley.
- Add the puree back to the pan. Add the clams. If using fresh, cleaned clams, bring to a boil until the clams have opened. Discard any that remain closed. Reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes. If using pre-cooked clams, bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes.
- Add the rice, bay leaves, wine and 2 cup of water. Cooking like a risotto, once the liquid has cooked down, add an additional cup of water. Once that liquid has cooked down, add an additional cup of water and simmer over medium heat until the rice is tender. Total cooking time should be about 25 minutes.
Your rice should be on the soupier side, perfect for dipping bread!
I wanted to thank Brie of Le Grand Fromage for a friendship award! Thank you Brie!!
Also, Kristy from My Little Space for a 2009 Blogger Appreciation Award. Thanks Kristy, you are so great!
Also, My coconut flour persimmon muffin recipe turned a few heads as I was asked to feature this recipe on Foodshots and I won 2 quarts of coconut oil for a winning recipe entry on the Tropical Traditions recipe blog. I really am enjoying baking with coconut flour so look out for some future recipes!