This recipe is typical of Chinese dishes, where cooks often stir-fry seafood combined with a small amount of minced pork. The result is a rich savoury mixture that is extremely tasty. Only the freshest, preferably live, clams should be used.
Here the mixture is served with fresh lettuce leaves, which provide a crisp contrast to the soft clam and pork mix. Each guest puts a portion of the clam and pork mixture into a hollow lettuce leaf and then eats it with their fingers.
This dish makes an unusual, delicious first course.
Put the minced pork into a bowl together with the soy sauce, the teaspoon of Shaoxing rice wine or dry sherry, sesame oil and cornflour and mix well. Leave to marinate for about 20 minutes.
Bring the water to the boil in a large pan and add the clams. Remove them as soon as they begin to open. Finish opening them by hand and remove them from their shells. Discard the shells. Set the clam meat aside.
Separate and wash the lettuce leaves and set them aside, wiping off any excess water.
Heat a wok or large frying-pan over high heat until it is hot. Add the oil and, when it is very hot and slightly smoking, add the ginger, garlic and shallots and stir-fry for 20 seconds. Then add the pork and continue to stir-fry for 3 minutes. Then add the spring onions, the
© 1996 Ken Hom. All rights reserved.