Thursday, September 29, 2011

Linguine with "Popped" Red Clam Sauce

Linguine with "Popped" Red Clam Sauce

Cook's Note:  Linguine, linguinie, or linguini?  Do a Google and you come up with so many different spellings.  Even the two boxes of pasta I have in my pantry are spelled differently.  I went with Linguine, which I think is the most common (and correct) spelling.  At any rate, enjoy -- even if you spell it differently!

There are few dishes that taste better to me than one prepared with a mixture of popped cherry tomatoes and clams; especially when it’s topped with fresh herbs.  Sure, I love cherry tomatoes al dente; sautéed with garlic and tossed with bow tie pasta and fresh basil.  But when you let those cherry tomato suckers “pop,” especially when they are mixed with the clams, you get a fresh, seaside flavor sensation like nothing you’ve ever tasted before.

So tonight I am showcasing another easy pasta dish.  This one I know you will adore. 

By the way -- you know I love whole grain pasta, but for this, I splurge and use the “real” stuff.   

All you need to round out this lovely meal is a simple side salad and a little garlic bread. 

Weeknights never tasted so delicious.


½ pound Linguine
2 tablespoons Olive Oil
2 cloves fresh Garlic, minced
1 pint Cherry Tomatoes, sliced in half
2 Anchovy Fillets
Pinch or two of Crushed Red Pepper, to taste
¼ cup Dry White Wine
6.5 ounce can Chopped Clams, drained and juice reserved
4 ounces bottled Clam Juice
2 tablespoons butter, sliced into four pieces
Chopped fresh Basil, for topping
Chopped fresh Parsley, for topping

Cook pasta per package directions and chop fresh cherry tomatoes and garlic.

In a medium skillet, add olive oil and garlic.  Cook over low heat until garlic softens but does not brown, about three minutes.

Add cherry tomatoes, anchovy and crushed red pepper.  Cook for two-to-three more minutes. 

Add white wine, scraping any bits from the bottom of the pan.

Add juice from clams (but not clams).  Add bottled clam juice.  Bring to boil and reduce to simmer, about five minutes.  During this time, add one pat of butter at a time to thicken the sauce up.  By now those tomatoes should be “popping.”

Serve over cooked pasta.  Top with fresh herbs.

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