Quick Linguine & Clams

Yesterday it was 60 degrees in my neck of the woods. No jacket, windows down in the car, the smell of spring wafting through the air…and almost instantly my mind starts conjuring up seasonal dishes…pesto, black and blue burgers on the grill, ribs, tomato and cucumber salad, fresh basil…and then I stopped at a red light only to find myself staring at a mountain of snow built up on the corner…an abrupt reminder that, well, spring is close, but it’s still winter, dammit! A tease nonetheless, so I  decided to make a dish that would keep the feeling alive and the smell in the air, at least in my house anyway. Now, don’t get me wrong, this dish should be made with fresh little neck clams, but like I said, it’s still winter and I sure as heck wasn’t in the mood to clean clams after work, so I had to hack it…canned clams in their juices was the only option and I just so happened to have some in the pantry…

Serves 4

Prep time: ~25mins

Get yourself:

3 Cans clams in their juices

6 Cloves fresh garlic smashed

1 Bunch of parsley

.5C White wine (I used Pinot Grigio)

1lb Linguine

4T Extra virgin olive oil

s&cracked pep

Crushed red pepper flakes (optional)

Get all your goodies together

Bring a pot of salted water to a boil for the Linguine

In a heavy bottomed pot you’re going to perfume the oil with fresh garlic

To perfume oil you:

Smash garlic so it’s cracked open, remove skin

Toss in a pot with oil

Turn flame on medium high

As the oil gradually heats up, the garlic will infuse the oil

(If you’re using crushed red pepper add it in with the garlic, but don’t remove)

Once garlic is lightly browned on both sides, remove and set aside

Drain the juice off the clams into a separate bowl

Toss the clams in and saute for a couple of minutes

Add the clam juice back in

Add in the white wine

At this point the kitchen is going to smell off the hook

Throw some sandals on, crack open a beer…

Bring the flame up to high and burn the devil off for a minute or so

Reduce flame to medium low

Toss in a couple tablespoons of parsley

Add a smidgen of salt and several grinds of black pepper

Taste and adjust for seasoning

Careful not to add too much salt

At this point your sauce is ready to toss with Linguine

Drain Linguine, RESERVE 2 cups of the water

Add one cup of pasta water to the clam sauce and stir

Taste and adjust for seasoning

Sauce should be plentiful

You don’t want to be short because once the pasta hits the sauce it’s

going to suck it up like a Hoover

Add in 3/4 of the Linguine and stir

If it looks like the sauce vanished add in the rest of the pasta water and stir

Remember these guys?

We call them garlic crunchies

Chop them up and toss into the pasta for a little garlic crunch with every bite

You’re ready to plate…

Garnish with some fresh parsley and cracked pep

Twirl it, slurp it up, listen to the seagulls outside your window…

Wash it down with the rest of that cold, crisp, white wine

Life is good

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