Clams are one of the easiest foods to prepare. All you need to do is toss them in a pot with a little moisture, put the lid on until they open up, and enjoy. This recipe teams the clams with flavors that complement them nicely: white wine, garlic, and bacon. This recipe will yield a bit more broth than you might be expecting — all the better to sop up with some crusty bread.
Scrub each clam under cold water to make sure that there's no sand on them. Return to the refrigerator.
In a large, heavy (preferably cast-iron) pot with a lid, add the olive oil and bacon and render the fat from the bacon over medium heat. About halfway through the process, add the shallot and garlic. When crispy and golden brown, increase the heat to high, stir in the wine and broth, and reduce by about 1/3.
Add the clams to the pot, and cover. (The clams should open up after only a few minutes; at this point they're done cooking so you should turn off the heat.) Stir in the butter until it melts, divide the clams among serving bowls, and ladle the liquid over them. Garnish with parsley as desired, and serve with bread.