These Thai green curry clams will put a smile on your face – and if your taste buds had faces, they’d be smiling too. Clams are so simple to make and are chock full of minerals and protein. Buy the freshest ones you can find, and in a short period of time you will wonder why you don’t make these all the time. Seriously! You can make these exactly like the picture, my friends. Let me show you how!
The nitty gritty on clams
The clams are the star ingredient in this green curry clams recipe. Getting the freshest ingredients is paramount in most cooking endeavors. If the clams are not fresh and alive, they will not open when steamed. This recipe uses littleneck clams but any small type will work. I would not recommend using cherrystones in this dish as they are just too large.
Having a few not open is common, so buying them from a good seafood store or trusted supermarket is key. Don’t be shy about asking the fishmonger which are the freshest clams they have. Maybe they have very fresh mussels instead, which will also work nicely for this recipe.
Clams are excellent by themselves, and are so versatile. Red sauce, white sauce, baked, raw, steamed with a side of butter. Serve over pasta for a whole meal, or a dish like this one makes a great appetizer. There are a million ways to make clams!
What do we need to make this Thai seafood dish?
Well, we obviously need clams. Littlenecks are used in this recipe but any small bivalve such as cockles or mussels will work.
Green curry paste can be found in Asian grocers and occasionally I see it in supermarkets. I have tried a few brands over the years and they all have been very good. Make sure you are buying paste only and not a combo product of paste and coconut milk. Those tend to not have as much flavor. The great thing about the paste is you can start with a little and add more if its not spicy or flavorful enough.
Tomatoes, cilantro, jalapenos, limes, and 1 can of coconut milk complete the ingredient list.
This is a simple one. Clean the clams in a colander, then steam them in a pan with a lid. 5-10 minutes of steaming and they should all open up.
I like to remove them in batches as they open; some will open much quicker than others. After ten minutes, clams that have not opened should be discarded. These were likely dead prior to being cooked and will not taste good. The open ones can be set aside, so the sauce can be made.
Green curry paste is added to the pan and sauteed in a little oil for about 1 minute and then coconut milk is combined with the paste. Cook the paste and coconut milk for about 3 minutes. Make sure the paste is fully incorporated, then add the juice of 1 lime and the halved tomatoes and cook for 1 minute longer.
Finally, add the clams back to heat them through and the dish is done! Cilantro, jalapenos, and more limes all make great garnishes.
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Want another clam recipe? Check out this Italian clams in red sauce recipe.
- 2-3 pounds Littleneck Clams
- 4 oz Thai green curry paste
- 1 can coconut milk .....I used full fat from Trader Joe's. Reduced fat can be substituted.
- 4 oz water
- 2 Tbsp canola oil .....coconut oil can be substituted.
- 2-3 whole limes, halved
- 1/4 cup cilantro, stems removed
- 1 large jalapeno, chopped thin
- 1/2 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
- Wash clams to remove any sand or debris.
- Heat pan on medium high and add 4 oz of water and clams. Cover.
- Clams should open within 5-10 minutes. Remove open clams at 5 minute mark. Continue to cook unopened clams for 10 minutes and remove all the open ones. Place all the open clams in a serving bowl and set aside.
- Any unopened clams should be discarded as they are most likely dead.
- In pan heat 2 Tbsp of oil and curry paste over medium heat for 1-2 minutes.
- Add coconut milk to pan and stir to combine with the paste. Cook for 3 minutes making sure the paste and coconut milk are completely combined.
- Add tomatoes and juice of one lime to the pan. Cook for 1 minute.
- Add clams and stir to combine for 20 seconds.
- Turn off heat and plate. Serve with cilantro, limes, and jalapenos. Enjoy!