Hake Fillets with Clams in Salsa Verde

Hake Fillets with Clams in Salsa Verde

Hake Fillets with Clams in Salsa Verde.  This is a traditional Basque Country dish but served all over Spain its a wonderful tasty dish which is very popular during a Spanish Christmas Eve family dinner but of course can be served any time you fancy.

Popular Fish to eat in Spain

Serves 4 - Difficulty: intermediate

INGREDIENTS

24 Manila or small littleneck clams

2 pounds hake fillet, cut into 16 pieces, (you could also use cod or any white fish).

1 tablespoon coarse sea salt

100 ml water

30 ml olive oil

2 cloves garlic, finely minced

1/2 teaspoon hot red pepper flakes (optional)

1 Tablespoon all-purpose flour

1 1/2 teaspoons salt

2 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

120 ml dry white wine

4 white asparagus, freshly cooked or canned, halved crosswise

2 hard-boiled eggs, peeled and quartered lengthwise, for garnish

Chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley for garnish

Hake Fillets with Clams in Salsa Verde

Hake Fillets with Clams in Salsa Verde

METHOD

Scrub the clams under cold running water, discarding any that fail to close to the touch. In a large bowl, combine the clams, coarse salt, and water to cover and let stand for at least 30 minutes or up to 2 hours so that the clams release any sand trapped in their shells. Drain.

In a large saucepan, combine the clams with the 4 cups water and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Cover and cook for about 5 minutes, or until they open. As the clams cook, uncover the pan occasionally and stir with a wooden spoon to encourage them all to open at about the same time. Drain the clams, reserving the cooking liquid. Discard any clams that have not opened.

In a large frying pan, heat the olive oil over high heat. Add the garlic and red pepper flakes, if using, and fry, stirring often, for 1 to 2 minutes, or until the garlic begins to turn golden. Sprinkle the flour over the garlic and stir with a wooden spoon until the mixture is well blended. Add 3 cups of the reserved cooking liquid and the salt, parsley and wine.

Decrease the heat to medium and boil, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes, or until the sauce thickens slightly. Add more cooking liquid if you prefer a thinner sauce. Rotate the pan in circular motions over the burner to mix all the ingredients, and boil gently for 2 minutes, or until the sauce is blended and looks whitish green.

Sprinkle the hake pieces with salt and place in a single layer in the sauce. Cook, turning once, for 2 minutes on each side, or until opaque at the centre when tested with the tip of a knife.

Add the clams and asparagus, shake the pan gently to prevent sticking, and simmer for 2 more minutes to heat all the ingredients through.

Garnish with the egg wedges and sprinkle with the parsley. Serve immediately.

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