Clams in dark rum

Steamed Clams with Dark Rum


“It’s absolutely my favourite clam dish, for meals or one fo the dishes that complements your drinking session in the cold weather.”

Clam is one of the seafood I love most. Easy to prepare and it goes well with any kind of cooking method. The simplest way, to steam it!

Choose medium to large shells for more fleshy meat inside. How to choose good clams? I do not really have the best method to choose them, but at least sniff the clams from a short distance to determine if they are still good to eat or going bad, if they smelt fishy. it is better to get clams early in the morning at the wet markets as the clams are likely to be alive, still. So, don’t be afraid if you see it moves! The price of clams is low, too. With less than S$5, you may be able to get more than a bucket-full of clams.

This dish is not really suitable for young children as it contains dark rum liquor. I chose dark rum for its great scent. It remains fragrant, with a hint of mild sweet alcohol taste pretty much in evidence in the palate, even after much evaporation from the steam. However, its overall taste was subtle, and it’s best to serve while piping hot. For the rainy or cold season!

This recipe is easy to follow. With just 15 minutes of your time, you may get the dish up and serve!

1 large plate of medium to large hard-shelled clams, well scrubbed (about 500 – 600 grams)
3 cloves of garlic, chopped
3 thick slices of ginger, lightle mashed
2 – 3 tablespoons of dark rum (Myers’s Rum)
1 – 2 teaspoon of brown sugar
1 tablespoon of Italian herbs
Sprinkle of salt and ground white pepper

1) Soak clams in salted water for at least an hour.

2) Place clams on a large deep serving dish. Sprinkle chopped garlic, and scatter ginger slices among the clams. Now, sprinkle sugar, salt and pepper, followed by dark rum. Lastly, sprinkle Italian herbs, all evenly on the plate.

3) Heat up 1 inch water in wok with a lid, place clams on a steam rack in wok and steam for 10 minutes (or until almost all shells open) over high heat, with lid on. When done, serve immediately.

For spicy flavour, add some chilli padi (bird’s eye chilli) julienne.

1 portion of medium-large clams (about 10 – 12 shells with sauce intake) counts about 180kcal from this recipe.

Tips: If you do not have dark rum, use rice wine or sherry to replace it. To serve young children, omit the alcohol. You might want to add just some lemon juice instead of wine/ liquor.
* Amount of dark rum is adjustable, depends on your liking.
* Add up to 2 teaspoons of brown sugar, if you prefer sweeter rather than pungent alcohol scented sauce.
* Anyway, this dish is not really saucey. If more sauce/ stock is desired, add 2-3 tablespoons of water in it, before steaming. It is nice to drink it as clear soup.

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