Tonight, I’m serving up a minor variation on my regular Linguine and Clam Sauce. The basic ingredients are the same; garlic, onion, pepper, white wine and clams. But, today I’m using fresh clams (where I often use canned, chopped clams). I’m also incorporating a little anchovy for added flavor and garnishing with slow-roasted grape tomatoes. If anchovies are a deal-breaker for you, skip them. I’ve made this recipe tons of times without them, but they really do add a nice touch to the dish. They dissolve into the sauce and add a really nice savory flavor. If you decide to omit the anchovies, be sure to season your sauce with a bit of salt.
If you’ve never used fresh clams before, don’t let them intimidate you! They are as easy to cook as it is to open the canned clams. And, they make a show-stopping presentation. Just follow a few simple rules to ensure safety:
- Keep the clams refrigerated until ready to use.
- Thoroughly wash clams in cool water.
- Carefully examine each clam and discard any cracked or open clams.
- Discard any clams that don’t open after steaming.
- Personally, I prefer to purchase most seafood on the day I plan to use it, so it’s as fresh as possible.
And, if fresh clams aren’t available to you (or you’re just not keen on their tough exteriors), then go ahead and use canned clams. You can usually find them near the canned tuna, sardines, and such. They work wonderfully in this recipe!
Linguine with Clams and Slow-Roasted Tomatoes
- 1 box of Linguine
- Littleneck Clams (40-50)
- 1 Tbsp Olive Oil
- 4 Anchovy Fillets, chopped
- 3 cloves of Garlic, minced
- 1 small Onion, finely chopped
- 1 Green Pepper, finely chopped
- 3/4 cup White Wine
- 3/4 cup Clam Juice
- 1 Tbsp Lemon Juice
- Crushed Red Pepper
- Salt (optional)
- Slow-roasted Tomatoes (recipe follows)
- Parmesan Cheese
Rinse clams in cold water. Examine and discard any open or cracked clams. Bring a large pot of water to a boil and cook linguine until al dente. Heat olive oil in another large pot. Add anchovies and onion. Stir until anchovies dissolve and the onion begins to soften. Add garlic and green pepper. Cook for about a minute. Add white wine, clam juice, and lemon juice. Bring to a boil. Then, lower the heat to medium and simmer for 2-3 minutes. Carefully, add the clean clams to the pot and cover. Continue to cook for about 10 minutes, until the clams have opened. Remove and discard any clams which do not open. Season with crushed red pepper and additional salt, if desired. Serve the clams and sauce over the cooked linguine. Garnish with slow-roasted tomatoes. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese. (Serves 4)
For the Tomatoes:
Cut grape tomatoes in half, lengthwise. Toss in a little olive oil, salt, and pepper. Arrange on a baking sheet, cut side up. Cook in a 250 degrees oven for about 90 minutes until deep red and reduced in size. If you’re short on time, you can increase the heat and shorten the cooking time!