Ciao a tutti!
I wanted to share my quick and easy recipe for my delicious Spaghetti alle vongole. Trust me, if you follow this recipe you will never be able to order this dish at an “Italian” restaurant. What I mean is, that you may become like me and struggle to find a restaurant that serves pasta as good as you can make it yourself! The other problem is that your friends will always want you to cook!
Spaghetti or Linguine (1 box De Cecco or Barilla)
2 pounds of fresh (alive) Manila clams (or any clam that is small) Make sure to not use frozen or dead clams! I would buy these at whole foods or a small fish market.
red pepper flakes (pepperoncino)
white wine (optional)
Wash the clams under water using a brush to get off as much dirt as possible. Then soak the clams in water with salt and ice. The clams should squirt out some more dirt in the next few hours. Leave them soaking for 1-6 hours. Right before cooking clean the clams off again.
Get a large pot of water going for the pasta (covered).
In a large frying pan add olive oil, roufghly chopped garlic and red pepper flakes. Once they start cooking add the clams.
You can add a splash of white wine if you have some around to help them open (and then cover). After they have opened add a little parsley and reduce heat. Make sure not to overcook them.
At this point your pasta water should be boiling. Add a lot of salt to the water and then put in the whole box. Don’t forget to stir and don’t break the pasta. Set the timer for 1 minute less than the al dente recommendation because you will cook the spaghetti in the clam sauce a little more later.
When the timer goes off use tongs to move the pasta into the frying pan without draining. You may not need to use all of the pasta.
Mix the pasta and the sauce, increase the flame and cook for another minute or two. Add a little salt to taste. Serve immediately! Eat it while it’s hot like a real italian.