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Manila Clams with Basil and Chiles image

Both Thai and Vietnamese cuisines use healthy amounts of horapah basil (Thai basil), an aromatic plant with purple sterns and shiny leaves. Serve these fiery clams with plenty of steamed jasmine rice and a cold beer.

Provided by Vicki Butts (lazyme)

Categories     Seafood Appetizers

Time 25m

Number Of Ingredients 10

2 Tbsp canola oil
3 clove garlic, coarsley chopped
1 chili pepper, seeded and cut into long, narrow strips (thai, jalapeno, serrano)
1 red bell pepper, seeded, cut into long, narrow strips
1 yellow bell pepper, seeded, cut into long narrow strips
3 lb manila or littleneck clams, scrubbed
1 Tbsp thai roasted chile paste
1 Tbsp fish sauce
1/2 c fresh horapah basil (thai basil), torn if leaves are large
1/4 c fresh mint leaves


  • 1. Place a large, deep frying pan or wok over high heat. When the pan is hot, add the canola oil and swirl to coat the bottom of the pan. When the oil is hot but not smoking, add the garlic. Cook, stirring, until golden, about 30 seconds. Add the chili pepper and the red and yellow bell peppers and cook, stirring constantly, until lightly cooked, 1-2 minutes.
  • 2. Add the clams, discarding any that fail to close to the touch. Stir to coat with the oil. Cook, tossing and stirring, for 2 minutes, then stir in the chili paste and the fish sauce. Cook, stirring frequently, until the clams have opened, 3-5 minutes longer. Stir in the basil and mint.
  • 3. Transfer the clams to a platter or serving bowl, discarding any that failed to open. Serve immediately.

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