Cod Cheeks and Clams in a Tomato, Basil and White Wine Broth

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Simplicity is the key for me in cooking at home. Good ingredients, cooked well, often quickly. I have lots of store cupboard ingredients. There is always chorizo, a cupboard full of a variety of pasta shapes, noodles and rice. Lets call it the carb cave (and I LOVE my carbs). But often on a hot day I want simple seafood flavoured with fresh herbs and other bright ingredients. 

My original plan was to make the squid stuffed with beef and chorizo that I told you about in my last post. I am so keen to share that one with you soon. But, alas, there was no squid to be had. There was a bounty of cod cheeks, gorgeous delicate morsels of cod meat. There are many reasons to love these, they are delicious, and there isn’t even any chopping to do, they are all bite size. They are usually cheaper too, in this case they were half the price of the clams.

A Perfect Healthy Speedy Supper

Speed is essential on an evening especially when you start cooking as the sun is already setting, but there are some shortcuts that I don’t take. I had a beautiful large fleshy yellow beef tomato and it was essential to skin it. It takes just a few minutes and saves you pulling the tomato skin out from between your teeth (I know, ick, but also, very true). Otherwise everything is fast and easy. The results are summery and gorgeous. 

Enjoy! If you can’t source cod cheeks try monkfish cheeks or a white fish of your choice. 

Cod Cheeks and Clams in a Tomato, Basil and White Wine Broth
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Cod Cheeks and Clams in a Tomato, Basil and White Wine Broth


    serves two people with sides
  • 250g cod cheeks or white fish of your choice
  • 500g clams (I used palourde clams)
  • 1 big clove garlic, peeled and finely chopped
  • 1 large beef tomato (I used a yellow one), peeled and chopped
  • 150ml white wine (I used a pecorino from Abruzzo - use a white wine that you would drink and that is suitable with fish)
  • a handful of fresh basil leaves
  • 1/2 tsp Korean chilli or another mild chilli (or hotter if you like, chilli fiends!)
  • optional: chilli oil to finish
  • sea salt for seasoning
  • light oil for frying


  • Heat a tablespoon of oil in a high sided pan. Use a large one if you can, things will cook quickly.
  • Sauté the garlic for 30 seconds, then add the tomato and cook over a medium heat for about 5 minutes.
  • Add the cod cheeks and stir gently for 3-4 minutes (they will cook quickly). Add the clams, the chilli and the white wine. Stir very gently. Once the clams open check for seasoning and add salt if necessary (the clams will be a little salty).
  • Turn off the heat, Put half of the basil in and stir through. Serve with the rest of the basil sprinkled on top.
  • Eat immediately - enjoy!



    Written by Niamh
    Cooking and travelling, and sharing it all with you.