Black Pepper Clams
The oils released from freshly ground peppercorns offer more punch than pre-ground pepper. Here, Australian chef Pete Evans shares his twist on this spicy Asian dish.
- 2 1/4 pounds clams
- Coarse salt
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 6 cloves garlic
- 1 (2-inch) piece fresh peeled ginger, julienned
- 30 black peppercorns, coarsely crushed, plus freshly ground black pepper for seasoning
- 1 teaspoons finely chopped cilantro stems, preferably with the root attached
- 2 red finger chiles, seeded and julienned
- 2 tablespoons oyster sauce
- 1/2 cup snow peas, strings removed and sliced on the bias
- 1 cup fresh cilantro leaves
- Juice of 1 lemon
- Steamed rice, for serving
- Lemon wedges, for garnish (optional)
Place clams in a large bowl and add enough cold water to cover; lightly salt water and let stand for 2 hours to help purge sand from clams; drain and set aside.
Melt 3 tablespoons butter in a wok or high-sided skillet over medium heat. Add garlic, ginger, peppercorns, cilantro root, and chiles; cook, stirring, until soft and fragrant. Stir in oyster sauce and clams; cook until clams begin to open.
Stir in remaining 3 tablespoons butter. Add snow peas, cilantro, and lemon juice; season with freshly ground pepper. Serve immediately over steamed rice garnished with lemon wedges.