Clam, Shrimp and Sausage Stew with White Beans


Toss a few hard shell clams in a pot with some wine and garlic and you’ve got dinner. Dress it up with hot sausage, white beans and a chunk of bread and you have a meal. We make this Clam, Shrimp and Sausage Stew with White Beans after a trip to the fish market where we buy small hard-shell clams, which are the sweetest and easy to eat in one bite.

Use a wide deep frying pan to cook this dish. This allows the wine and clam juice to simmer vigorously while the sauce reduces. Parsley plays up Mediterranean flavors in this dish but cilantro would be just as welcome.

Yield: 4 Servings

1 Tablespoon olive oil

2 hot spiced Italian sausages or Portuguese chourico, about 4 ounces each

1 red Bell pepper, chopped 1 to 1 ¼ cups

1 small onion, chopped, 1/2 cup

1 clove of garlic, minced

1 cup dry white wine or fish stock

16 to 24 count neck or littleneck clams depending on the size

8 large shrimp, peeled and deveined

1 cup drained cooked white beans

4 Tablespoons fresh chopped parsley

Hot pepper sauce, optional


  • Heat the oil in a 10 to 12-inch wide and deep frying pan over medium heat. Add the sausage. Prick them in several places with the tip of a knife. Cook the sausages until well browned and cooked through. (I cover the pan with a splatter screen.) Reduce the heat half way through cooking to keep the sausages from burning.
  • Remove the sausages from the pan and set aside on paper towels to drain off any excess fat.
  • Remove all but 1 teaspoon of the oil from the pan. Add the chopped red pepper, onion and garlic. Cook over medium heat for a few minutes. To speed up cooking add 1/3 cup of water to the pan. Turn the heat up to medium high and cook until the water evaporates. This softens the vegetables without the need for adding more oil to the pan. Continue cooking on medium until the vegetables soften, for about 6 more minutes.
  • Add the wine to the onion and pepper mixture. Cut the sausage into chunks and add it along with the clams. Cover the pot. Bring the mixture to a boil then reduce to a strong simmer and cook for about 5 to 7 minutes until the clams just begin to open. Add the shrimp, white beans and parsley. Cook for about 3 to 4 minutes longer until the shrimp are cooked yet tender and the white beans are heated through. Season with hot pepper sauce to taste.
  • Serve in warmed bowls with crusty bread.


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Cover photo by Priscilla Martel