Meals that made America great – Portuguese Clams
How food from around the world found a welcome home in the US - as featured in America The Cookbook
We all know about Jewish New York, the Irish in Boston, and Miami’s Cuban expatriates. Yet other, smaller communities within America’s great demographic patchwork are less familiar to many of us.
As our new title America The Cookbook explains, Portuguese immigrants began settling in Rhode Island in the late 1600s, and the state now has the highest per capita population of people with Portuguese heritage in the US.
The state capital, Providence, hosts annual Portuguese heritage celebrations, the delis stock linguiça, a smoke-cured pork sausage of Portuguese extraction. Locals, taking advantage of the coastline's crustaceans, as well as old-country seafood traditions, cook hard-shell clams with linguiça, potatoes, chicken stock and kale. It’s a simple dish that takes around 50 minutes, from start to finish.
As America The Cookbook's author Gabrielle Langholtz explains in her introduction. "Our culinary canon is wild and wonderful. It is old and it is young. It is slippery and sticky, sour and sweet, and searingly spicy. It's black and white and brown. It's messy and it's meaningful." And, after trying a good few of the recipes in the book, phaidon.com would just like to add: "it's all DELICIOUS!" to that roll call of fame.
For more on the surprising routes some recipes have taken to end up on the plates in the US, as well as plenty recipes, both homegrown and recently imported, order a copy of America The Cookbook, here.