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Steamed Clams in a flavorful French-style ,Tarragon White Wine Broth with fresh peas, served with crusty bread to mop up all the flavorful juices!

Steamed Clams

  • Author: Sylvia Fountaine | Feasting at Home Blog
  • Prep Time: 10 mins
  • Cook Time: 20 mins
  • Total Time: 30 mins
  • Yield: 2-4 1x
  • Category: Main, seafood, shellfish
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: French
  • Diet: Gluten Free


Steamed Clams with Tarragon, Peas,  and lemon in a flavorful white wine broth, served with crusty bread to mop up all the flavorful juices!


Units Scale
  • 2 tablespoons butter or olive oil (or a mixture)
  • 1 cup thinly sliced leeks (two medium leeks, white parts only, or sub white onion, or 2 shallots, diced)
  • 48 garlic cloves
  • 1 cup white wine (dry)
  • 1/2 cup chicken broth
  • 2 pounds clams, cleaned
  • 12 cups peas (fresh or frozen)
  • 1/41/2 cup heavy cream or half and half
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/4 cup fresh tarragon leaves ( or sub 1 cup chopped Italian parsley)
  • Zest of one small lemon, and a squeeze of its juice, to taste

NOTE: A tiny splash of Pernod would be really good here (at the same time as the wine)

Serve with crusty toasty (or grilled) bread and sprinkle with more fresh tarragon


  1. Heat butter or oil over medium-low heat in a large heavy bottom pot and cook leeks and garlic until tender and melting, turning heat lower if necessary.
  2. Add wine and broth and bring to a simmer.
  3. Add clams (remember they will release their liquid) cover, and let simmer until they have opened up. (Cockles take 5 minutes, clams 8-10 mins, Mussels up to 15 mins). Remove any that haven’t opened and discard.
  4. Add the peas, cream, and  salt and pepper to taste.
  5. Add the lemon zest and squeeze of lemon to taste, and stir in the fresh tarragon or parsley. 
  6. Divide broth and clams among bowls  and serve immediately with crusty bread to mop up all the flavorful juices.


Feel free to sub mussels or clams- make sure they are clean, and debearded.

Serves 2 as a meal, or 4-6 as an appetizer.


  • Serving Size:
  • Calories: 345
  • Sugar: 3 g
  • Sodium: 1998.1 mg
  • Fat: 14.9 g
  • Saturated Fat: 4.9 g
  • Carbohydrates: 17.2 g
  • Fiber: 2.1 g
  • Protein: 36.2 g
  • Cholesterol: 85 mg

Keywords: steamed clams, steamed cockles, cockles recipes, spring cockles