Karin’s Curried Clam Pie

It’s not that often that I am introduced to a dish that’s completely new to me. Recipes so often seem like variations on a theme, the same old dish spun a little differently. Show me something new, and I’ll race over to your place for dinner.

Which is how we found ourselves at our family friend Karin’s apartment the other night. When Karin first mentioned the phrase clam pie to us over Thanksgiving, I couldn’t picture quite what she was talking about—did she mean a clam pizza? Or some sort of chicken pot pie filled with clam chowder?

Not exactly—this clam pie was rich with ginger, coconut, and turmeric, and spiked with fresh jalapeno and cilantro. The recipe was inspired by a fish curry from Macau, but with clams instead, and served inside a savory part-whole-wheat pie crust. The key, Karin revealed, was to just barely steam the clams open, then use the resulting broth for cooking the potatoes, thus infusing them with perfect sweet clam flavor. Genius.

So we scored ourselves an invitation.

While I admired Karin’s gorgeous kitchen remodel and drooled over her well-planned cabinet space, she grated the aromatics and sliced some long beans to add to the curry. Soon, the yellow curry was secured under softly folded pie dough, and the rich scent of coconut and spice filled the kitchen.

Studded with shelled clams and rich, creamy potatoes, it made for a warm and comforting winter meal—and a new, refreshingly exotic one at that! We all had seconds, and I demanded the recipe on the spot.

Are there any completely new recipes in your lives these days?

Continue reading…