Monday, October 25, 2010

Clams in White Wine with Linguine

This one's for you Tim.

When you buy clams from the market, they should be alive. They should stay alive till you're ready to cook them. When you're done cooking them, they should all be opened. If any of the clams do not open, do not eat them! Also, be sure to clean the shells very well. They have little groves that can hold dirt, and you don't want a gritty sauce!

A Large pot of Salted Boiling Water
1 T Butter
2-4 large Shallots - diced
2 Celery stalks - finely diced
Garlic - sliced
6 peeled and seeded Tomatoes - diced
Crushed Red Pepper Flakes (CRP)
1 1/2 cups Dry White Wine
Juice form 1 Lemon - divided
1-2 lb Clams - cleaned well
1 T cold Butter
Fresh Basil - chiffonade

Heat butter and EVOO in a large skillet.

Add celery and shallots to the pan. Stir and cook for 2 minutes.

Add garlic to the pan and cook 2 more minutes.

Stir in the tomatoes and season with s/p and CRP. Cook for another 2-4 minutes.

Turn the heat off, or remove the pan from the open flame (to prevent a flare up) and add the wine. Return the pan to the heat and add 1/2 of the lemon juice.

Bring to a boil.

Mix the anchovies in.

Place the clams in a single layer in the pan. Cover the pan and cook till all of the clams have opened. This should take 10-15 minutes.

This is also when I put my pasta into the salted boiling water. You don't want to over cook the pasta, it will finish cooking in your sauce pan with the clams. I suggest cooking the linguine for a minute or two less than the recommended cooking time.

After 8-9 minutes, I checked them. The clams in the center of the pan were open, but the one on the outside still needed more time. This is because the heat was more intense in the center of my pan, so I rearranged them. Then, I returned the lid and cooked the clams for another 5-6 minutes.

When the clams are finished cooking, stir the cold butter in. This will finish the sauce.

Next, toss the drained pasta into the pan with the clams. Cook another minute or two.

Serve in a large bowl topped with the rest of the juice and fresh herbs, if you like. I used basil but parsley or oregano would also be great.

These clams are great as an appetizer when served in a big bowl with all the juice from the pan and no noodles. Serve with crust bread, or without the bread to have a gluten free dish.

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