Steamed Clams with Garlic Butter

To complement a pot of garlicky steamed clams, all you need is some crusty bread — or perhaps just a spoon. Tarragon and chives provide a zingy freshness to the clams in this variation, while lime juice and zest brighten things up. But it’s the butter that brings the dish together!

When cleaning the clams, take your time; they’ll need a good scrubbing under running water to get rid of all the sand and grit. If the sauce contains grit, strain it through a sieve fitted with a dish towel or allow it to fall to the bottom of the pot and spoon the sauce from the top.


1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
A splash of white wine (Optional)
4 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons tarragon
1kg littleneck clams (about 30 clams)
2 tablespoons minced chives
Grated zest of 1 lime
Pinch red pepper flakes
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 tablespoons lime juice


Warm oil over medium heat in a medium saucepan or large straight-sided skillet with a cover. Garlic and tarragon should be added at this point. Cook for 2 minutes, or until garlic is somewhat softened.

Stir in the clams and optional white wine, then cover and cook for 5 to 10 minutes, or until the clams open. Remove the clams from the saucepan with a slotted spoon or tongs and divide them into two serving bowls. Any clams that do not open should be discarded.

Increase the heat to high and cook for 20 seconds before adding the chives, lime zest, and red pepper flakes to the pan sauce. Whisk in the butter and lime juice until the butter has melted and the sauce has thickened up a bit.

Serve immediately with pan juices poured over clams.

Nicholas Lin

Nick is a multi-faceted, entrepreneur, restauranteur, and luxury curator. Passionate about wine, good food, fitness and travel, Nick left his management consulting job in New York City to pursue his passions for food and started a chain of sit-down restaurants in Singapore. After exiting the F&B business in 2019, he began to explore his other passions for fine wines, luxury travel, and a healthy lifestyle. Nick obtained WSET level 2 and attends numerous wine masterclasses each year. He writes about a myriad of topics and aspires to produce films in the very near future.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s