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Portuguese pork with clams

A classic Portugese dish most often found on menus in the central area of Portugal called the Alentejo.  I made a face when I first saw this on a menu, but after some coercion I tried it and fell in love.  The flavors are truly unique and delicious.

The pork meat is stewed and then the clams are steamed in the pot for the last ten minutes.  I adapted the recipe from more traditional versions to make it more simple to prepare with ingredients that are easy to find.

Portuguese pork with clams

A classic Portugese dish most often found on menus in the central area of Portugal called the Alentejo.  I made a face when I first saw this on a menu, but after some coercion I tried it and fell in love.  The flavors are truly unique and delicious.

The pork meat is stewed and then the clams are steamed in the pot for the last ten minutes.  I adapted the recipe from more traditional versions to make it more simple to prepare with ingredients that are easy to find.

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Ingredients

Recipe serves: 6
pork
2 pounds pork tenderloin, cut into 1 inch cubes
1 large red onion, roughly chopped
3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 tablespoon olive oil (you can also use bacon fat for more flavor)
3 bay leaves, crushed
2 teaspoon piri piri or red pepper flakes
3 tablespoon red pepper paste (you can substitute tomato paste though flavor is a bit different)
1 cup dry white wine
1 cup water
1 teapoon salt, more to taste if necessary
few grinds of black pepper
clams
1 1/2 pounds fresh clams
large bowl of salted cold water
finish
1 handful cilantro/coriander
potatoes
1 pound white potatoes, peeled and cut into cubes
2-4 tablespoons olive oil
salt, to taste
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Portuguese pork with clams
  • time
    2 hours
  • serves
    6
  • skill level
    Medium

Ingredients

  • pork

  • clams

  • finish

  • potatoes

Directions

1
Done

clams

Clean the clams by placing them into a large bowl of cold salted water (about 2 tablespoons salt). Leave in water for 30 minutes.

2
Done

Drain and if not serving immediately, refrigerate clams for up to two hours. If any clams are not closed, tap the shell, if they do not close then discard the clam.

3
Done

pork

In a large heavy bottom sauce pan (Dutch oven) put the olive oil, and then brown the pork over high heat, about 8 minutes.

4
Done

Add the onion and garlic, cook for 3-4 minutes stirring continuously.

5
Done

Add the bay leaves, piri piri or red chili flakes, red pepper paste, water and wine. Stir together well and simmer for one hour.

6
Done

After 40 minutes of pork cooking, start the potatoes (see below)

7
Done

final dish

Add the clams to the pork, mix together and cook 8-10 minutes before serving.

8
Done

All the clams should open when ready to eat. If any have remained closed after 8-10 minutes, discard any clams that are not open.

9
Done

Top with fresh chopped cilantro (coriander) and serve over the potatoes.

10
Done

potatoes

Place potatoes in a pot with cold water and 1 teaspoon salt. Bring to a boil.

11
Done

Continue to boil for 10 minutes until potatoes are tender but not too soft. Drain.

12
Done

In a large saute pan, add 2-3 tablespoons olive oil and heat until slightly sizzling.

13
Done

Working in batches, add the potatoes and cook until golden brown. You may need to add more olive oil.

14
Done

Remove potatoes onto a plate with paper towel- to help absorb oil.

15
Done

Place potatoes on large serving plate with a rim, pour the pork and clams over potatoes and sprinkle with cilantro (coriander). Serve piping hot.