If you can get your hands on some fresh clams you’re gonna want to make this. You’ll learn how to make an authentic Chinese restaurant style brown sauce with fermented black beans. This is probably one of the most expensive menu items at your local Chinese restaurant. Make this at home and you’ll save a bunch.
1kg. (2lbs.) Fresh Clams
1½ Tbsp. Chinese Fermented Black Beans
2 Large Garlic Cloves
Couple of Chillis (use as many as you like)
3 Tbsp Spring Onions
2/3 Cup Water
2 Tablespoons Oyster Sauce
1 Tbsp Light Soy Sauce
2 Tsp Dark Soy Sauce
2 Tsp Pure Sesame Oil
1/2 Tsp Ground White Pepper
1 Tsp Sugar
Bits of Cilantro
1 Tablespoon Cornstarch + 1 Tablespoon Water
Clean the clams well, then place into a bowl and fill with water. Add a tablespoon of salt and stir. This will help clean out some dirt and sand inside live clams. Let sit for about 45 minutes and then completely strain clams right before cooking.
Chop up the garlic, not too small, not too big. Slice up the chilies. Slice up the whites of the spring onions only, thats where the most flavors are. Reserve the tops as a garnish.
Throw in the light soy sauce, dark soy sauce, oyster sauce, ground white pepper, sugar and pure sesame oil then mix well and set aside.
Mix water and cornstarch then set aside. This is called a slurry which helps to thicken sauce.
Heat a wok on medium high heat. When it starts to smoke add 2 to 3 tablespoons of oil. Then toss in fermented black beans, garlic, chilis and spring onions.
Let cook for about 15 sends stirring constantly so these ingredients don’t burn.
Then add clams and stir well for a minute. Add sauce and mix for another minute. Then shove the clams aside until all the liquids are in the center of wok.
Then give the slurry another mix and toss directly into the sauce. Immediately mix with all ingredients. You will see the sauce thicken up.
Lower heat to medium low and place a lid on top of wok. Let that cook for another 30 seconds.
All the clams should be open. Discard the ones that aren’t open.
Immediately plate so clams don’t overcook and place some fresh chilies on top and some cilantro on top.
This is good to enjoy with steamed rice. And just as good alone with some cold beer.