"This is a classic Italian American dish, but it's also a dish we eat in Italy every summer. It's so fresh and simple that we had to put it on our menu. But you absolutely have to use fresh clams." -Marion Scotto Use the larger amount of red pepper for a zestier dish.
1/4 cup olive oil, divided
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/3 cup clam juice
1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1/2 to 3/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
3 dozen littleneck clams
8 cups hot cooked linguine (about 1 pound uncooked pasta)
How to Make It
Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add garlic; cook 3 minutes or until golden, stirring frequently. Stir in clam juice and next 5 ingredients (clam juice through clams). Cover and cook 10 minutes or until clams open.
Place pasta in a large bowl. Add 2 tablespoons oil; toss well to coat. Add clam mixture to pasta; toss well.
This was my first experience cooking with clams, so I don't have a basis of comparison. However I liked the simplicity and elegance of the dish, and the ease in putting it together. I also thought that such a thin sauce might make for a bland dish but it was very flavorful. I didn't have clam juice on hand so I used chicken broth, and I threw in some broccoli florets with the clams to add some veggies. My husband is on the fence due to the work in removing the meat from the clams but I'll keep this recipe on file.
So, this probably ins't fair to rate, since I changed so much, but maybe someone might like to try my suggestions. I used this as a base for a sauce, but modified it greatly for a fantastic pasta dish. I only used a small amount of olive oil for flavor to reduce fat and calories, used brown rice pasta for gluten issues, and replaced the clams with shrimp (chicken stock instead of clam juice). I added quartered brussell sprouts for veggies, and replaced the salt with sun dried tomatoes. Finished sauce with a splash of pinot grigio, and added a sprinkle of grated cheese to the top. Delicious!
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