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The pan roast, a model of ease, an emblem of the robust fare of old, is a favorite of mine. Most of the pan roasts I’ve had in my life have involved oysters, and fair enough, the oyster loves to be slathered in butter and laid upon a drift of toast. But it was time for the clam to get a chance at the pan roast.
James Beard’s pan roast calls for 3/4 cup of butter to poach the oysters. You are welcome to take that route, but be ready to lie prone on the sofa afterward. I opted, instead, to steam open the clams with just a slick of butter in the pan to mingle with the clam juices, and later added a shot of cream with paprika, herbs, and the seasoning pinch hitter, Worcestershire sauce.
Clams Pan Roast
Serves 2 for lunch; 4 as a light first course
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 12 to 16 littleneck clams, scrubbed
- 1 scallion, thinly sliced
- 2 tablespoons heavy cream
- 1/8 teaspoon hot smoked paprika
- 1/4 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1/4 teaspoon thyme
- 1/2 teaspoon parsley
- 4 to 8 toast points
- Lemon wedges