I have been living on the East coast for about six years. One of the best things about living here is waking up to the smell of the salt in the air on a misty morning. It makes me think of sand dunes, waves and believe it or not, clams! I recently had the pleasure of being invited to Pictou by my friend, Nick, who also happens to be a fish supplier. His father, Paul, aka “Chip”, happens to be the mastermind behind the Black Point clams and oysters that I am so very fond of. So off we set on a rainy Friday afternoon to spend the weekend on the Northumberland Shore with this “fishy” family. I had visions of me in a bikini with a snorkel and a mesh bag, diving in the warm, salty water; clams, oysters and bay scallops a bounty! To my dismay, Mother Nature decided to rain on my parade, and instead I was only able to walk down to the water’s edge and hand pick these beauties out of baskets. Oh well, at least they were in the water, and I didn’t have to scare anybody with the sight of me in a bikini and snorkel! Luckily enough when the weather let up, Paul and his wife took us on their boat and gave us a tour of one of their nearby “bottom leases”. It was amazing for us to see all that went into the production of these delicious mollusks.
My favorite recipe for the Black Point clams is to simply grill them until they open and then toss them with a little “salsa verde” or depending on the time of year, “nasturtium butter”. Seeing as the nasturtiums are bountiful in my yard right now, I’ll pass along my recipe for the butter. Enjoy.
- 1 lb salted & softened butter
- 2 cups nasturtium flowers
- 1 cup nasturtium leaves
- 3 lemons; zest and juice of two
- 1/4 cup cracked black pepper
In a food processor, soften the butter. Once very soft, add the rest of the ingredients. Make sure not to process too much or you will end up with “green” paste instead of the “speckled” effect.