This Chorizo and Clams post is kind of a cheat. That’s because by the time you’ve read the last word you won’t really have an exact recipe. The kind of recipe you could follow precisely and (hopefully) end up staring at a bowl of clams that look an awful lot like the one you see here. But you’re a good cook I know you are, so I’m sure you can deal with my little “cheat”.
It started this way.
Sunday mornings at my house are for the farmers market. Well, they used to be. The farmers market was one of those weekly things Ken and I did together. However, as my caregiving responsibilities have changed and grown over the past couple of years they’ve managed to creep into my market mornings. At first just little by little week to week. But lately, I just send Ken to the farmers market all on his own. It’s better for my pantry than skipping the trip altogether.
This past Sunday Ken came home with clams. Perfect for a quick Sunday supper. Chorizo and Clams can be so simple. A splash of wine, a knob of butter, and herbs from the garden. Set the bowl next to a loaf of crusty bread and you’ve got dinner. It would be delicious, but it would not warrant a post.
Which means this post was never meant to be.
Until it was…
It started because I made a soffritto. If you don’t know, a soffritto is a culinary building block. A lot of my impromptu cooking starts with soffritto, though I make it a little differently each time. A tomato soffritto can be a five-hour process in Thomas Keller’s hands, or it can be almost as simple as a mirepoix. The soffrito for these clams was made with red bell pepper, onion, a lot of garlic (a whole bulb), rosemary, dried chili, and smoked paprika. It took me about an hour and it turned out very well. Suddenly my simple Chorizo and Clams farmers market dinner had the potential to be special. Special enough for a post.
This is where my post and recipe start to “cheat”.
Chorizo and Clams with Braised Kale and Soffritto
You see I didn’t follow a recipe when I started with the soffritto and I didn’t write down what I did. I could have recreated the steps from memory I suppose. I make a soffritto in a similar fashion quite often. But that might be considered cheating anyway. If you’re going to cheat – cheat big I say. So I cheated again with the kale. I braised it with olive oil, white wine, and rosemary. And guess what – I didn’t write it down.
So when you come to the recipe section of this post you may notice my cheat. I simply call for a cup of soffritto and a cup of well-chopped braised kale — as nonchalantly as if these were ingredients I’d expect you keep in your pantry every day anyway. GREG
Though there are a million variations, it’s all the same thing: Sofrito (Spanish), sofregit (Catalan), soffritto (Italian) or refogado (Portuguese).