This is a very simple recipe. The CC has seen it made with mussels as well.
The parmesan toasts are simply superb. They would work with most soups.
The advantage of making them is you do get a subtle umami flavoring from the parmesan as you dunk them in clam soup but at no point does it overwhelm the purity of the clam flavor which would be the case if you just added parmesan directly to the soup.
(yields 8 triangles)
1 1/2 cup grated parmigiano-reggiano
4 slices bread
Preheat the oven to 350°F.
On a tray lay out the slices of bread and evenly divide the parmesan onto each.
Bake for about 10 minutes. Be careful that they do not burn. Cut into triangles and set aside.
Clam, White Bean & Saffron Soup
2 dozen clams
1 small onion (sliced into thin half-rounds)
1/4 cup white beans
large pinch of saffron
First make the beans. Cook them in very lightly salted water till done. Roughly 20 minutes. Reserve the broth. (Do not oversalt the water because the clams are briny and the soup will become overly salty)
Cook the clams with some water. When they open fish them out. Pass the clam broth through a cheesecloth to eliminate the sand. Reserve the clams and broth separately.
In a pot, heat up some olive oil. Add the onions and cook till they are limp but not colored. Fry the cooked beans for a bit. Add the two broths and black pepper. Bring to a boil and let it cook for about 8-10 minutes. Add the saffron at the last minute. Turn off the heat.
Divide the clams into two bowls. Top with the soup. Serve with the parmesan toasts.