This Portuguese specialty is named for 19th century poet Raimundo António de Bulhão Pato, 1829-1912, apparently by a chef in Bragança whom Bulhão Pato had mentioned in his writing.
Unfortunately I cannot verify this since I can't find much in the way of English translations of Bulhão Pato. And truthfully, I don't really care if it's apocryphal--it sounds like a good enough story so we'll go with it.
What I do know is that this dish is an absolutely celestial manner in which to prepare the humble clam or cockle. My brother and I recently visited Lisbon and had it several times, luckily beginning with the second day we were there.
Imagine if we had only discovered it right before we were about to leave!
Anyway, here's how you make it.
What To Do
- Heat the oil in a saucepan that has a lid that fits it
- Saute the garlic briefly in the hot oil (don't let it get too brown)
- Add the clams, wine, pepper and salt
- Cover the pan and cook till the clams open
- Discard any clams that do not open (sneff suggests that you might get fewer unopened clams if you start them in a cold pan with the oil and garlic--try it and see)
- Add the lemon juice and the coriander
- Serve right away with warm crusty bread for dipping in the sauce
Share and Enjoy!