05/06/2016 20:49 GMT+7 Email Print Like 0

Hue clam rice

Not is it a favourite dish for Hue citizens on hot summer days, com hen (rice served with basket clams) also get praise from visitors who have tried the dish with fresh and light clam broth and savoury Hue shrimp paste.

Com hen requires a lot of ingredients. It needs basket clams, rice, pork cracklings, lettuces, chilli, basil, giant elephant ears, scallions, roasted peanuts, cashews oil, garlic, Hue shrimp paste, sour carambola, onions, spices, roasted sesame seeds, fish sauce, chilli powder, sugar, gingers and oil.

Clams are stir-fried with spices and chopped scallions.

Rice used in the cuisine is quite dry and spongy.

Pork cracklings are an indispensible side dish of the cuisine.

Pork cracklings are an indispensible side dish of the cuisine.

Clam rice is regarded not only as a tasty dish but also as medicinal food.

Clams are soaked to get rid of the dirt, thoroughly cleaned and boiled before removing the shell. The flesh is then marinated with spices for 10 minutes and stir-fried with oil, chopped onions, chilli powder, and fish sauce. Scallions  are added when the clams are well done.

Stir-fried clams are put into a bowl with rice, herbs, chopped giant elephant ears, roasted peanuts, carambola, sesame seeds and topped with pork cracklings. Shrimp paste and chilli can be added to enhance the taste.

The boiling broth is boiled again and seasoned with Hue shrimp paste, sugar and ginger.

The complete broth is added to the mixture of clams and rice as a marinade. Everything is well mixed before serving.

A basket clam is a mollusc with a hard shell that lives in both fresh and brackish water. Its flesh has a sweet flavour and generates cold energy, therefore it is good for the intestines and liver as well as promoting qi in the body, the diuretic process and detoxification. Hue citizens see clams not only as a speciality that can be used to make delicious dishes but also a kind of medicinal food.  

By Nguyen Luan