Linguine with clams (or linguine con le vongole) seemed like a complicated dish, until I made it. If you have all of the ingredients on hand, you can prepare the entire dish while your pasta is cooking. That is, unless you’re using a homemade pasta recipe, which cooks in a fraction of the time.
This recipe is adapted from one by Tyler Florence and is my husband’s current favorite meal. The main difference is that we double the sauce per serving of pasta. It’s a great way to use leftover white wine.
This is a recipe that I keep on the blog so that I don’t lose it. I refer to this page often but just updated it with nicer photos.
- 1 lb dry linguine
- 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 8 garlic cloves
- 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes (can omit if you have kids)
- 3-4 lbs littleneck or Manila clams, rinsed and scrubbed
- 1 1/2 cups dry white wine
- 2 average-sized lemons, juiced
- 6 tbsp unsalted butter
- 1 cup of chopped Italian parsley (flat leafed)
- parmesan cheese (optional garnish)
- bread crumbs (optional garnish)
- salt and pepper
- Bring large post of salted water to boil and cook linguine about 8-10 minutes or until al dente.
- Prepare sauce while linguine is cooking. I use an 8 quart stock pot to cook the sauce and it seems to fit the clams and linguine all together just fine though it will also depend on how big your clams are.
- Heat olive oil over medium flame in the large stockpot. Add garlic and red pepper flakes and saute for 2 minutes. Add clams, wine, and lemon juice. Cover and cook. Shake the pan periodically until all clams are opened, about 7 minutes. Discard clams that have not opened.
- Increase heat to medium high. Add hot linguine to the pan, butter and season with salt and pepper. Toss the pasta with the clams so it's coated. Dress each serving with chopped parsley, bread crumbs and/or parmesan cheese (all optional).
A note about clams: I get my clams at The Fishery in San Diego for about $6 per pound. Once rinsed and scrubbed, they actually don’t need to be purged. It is very important to buy good quality clams. Manila clams are a little bigger than littleneck clams. I’ve used both (even at the same time) and they’re both great but have a slight preference for smaller littleneck clams. Go with what is available.