Monday: Linguini with White Clam Sauce
Pssst...it's my birthday and this is exactly what I want for dinner. It is reminiscent of my Mom's dinner table and the salty shores of Connecticut - yum!
Serves: 4 Prep: 10 Cooking: 35
For the Pasta and Clams
2 tablespoons sea salt
12 ozs spaghetti
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium onion, finely chopped
4 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1/4 teaspoon red-pepper flakes
3/4 cup dry white wine
2 pounds small clams, such as Manila, rinsed and scrubbed
2 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons fresh flat leafed Italian parsley, coarsely choppedFor the Garlic Bread
1 small baguette, halved lengthwise
2 tablespoons butter, softened
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 ½ teaspoons Italian dried herb seasoning
In a large pot, bring water and sea salt to a boil.
In a small bowl, prepare the garlic spread by combining butter, garlic and herbs. Spread evenly on inside of baguette. Set aside.
While waiting for water to boil, chop onion, garlic and parsley.
Add pasta to pot and cook 2 minutes less than package instructions for al dente – use a timer.
While pasta cooks, heat oil over medium in a Dutch oven or 5-quart heavy pot with a lid. Add onion, garlic, and red-pepper flakes. Cook, stirring occasionally, until onion is soft, 5 to 7 minutes.
Drain the pasta, reserving ½ cup of the cooking water. Set aside.
Reserve 1/2 cup pasta water and drain pasta. Set aside.
To the onion mixture, add wine, and bring to a boil; cook, stirring occasionally, until reduced by half, about 2 minutes.
Add clams; cover, and simmer, jostling the pot occasionally, until clams open wide, 3 to 5 minutes. (Important: discard any that haven’t opened after 5 minutes.)
Meanwhile, place garlic bread under the broiler for 3-5 minutes – watch them!
When clams have opened, add pasta to clam mixture in pot; continue to cook about 2 minutes.
Remove from heat, and stir in butter and parsley. Add about half of reserved pasta water to thin sauce – more if necessary.
Taste a piece of pasta - season with salt if necessary.
To serve, divide among 4 plates placing clams, in their shells, atop the pasta. Serve garlic bread alongside.
Remember a bowl for the shells on the table.