Long Island Clams with Herb Butter

Summer Break! After spending the week in Manhattan, it was time for a change of pace, and we decided, as so many New Yorkers do, to settle on Long Island. We occupied a beautifully restored, 200-year old barn on the East End and enjoyed the sandy beaches, gorgeous bays, fertile land and vineyards, upscale beach towns, and sleepy Hopperian villages. Just two blocks away, we found a fishmonger where, obviously, we bought locally caught clams. We love to prepare clams on the grill with an herb butter and grilled bread. For us that’s summer!

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Appetizer, serves 4
Action time: 15-20 minutes

24 littleneck clams
1 stick/ 8 tbsp/125 g butter, softened
a large handful of fresh mixed herbs (a very good combination is tarragon, parsley, and rosemary), finely chopped
a large garlic clove, pressed
a pinch of cayenne
lemon wedges, to serve
grilled bread, to serve

Extra: grill with a lid, small roasting pan

1. Prepare the grill. Clean the clams; don’t use any that are damaged or won’t close. In a small bowl, mix the butter with the herbs, red pepper flakes. Season with salt.

2. Put the clams on the grill and close the lid. Grill until clams start to open.

3. Remove clams from the grill, put them in a small roasting pan and divide the herb butter over the open shells. Put the roasting pan back onto the grill for 1-2 minutes, until butter has melted. Serve immediately with lemon wedges and grilled bread.

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