Pasta with clams (pasta con le vongole) is a very common dish in any place in Italy which is close enough to the sea. The best kind of clams are the large and juicy vongole veraci, a cornerstone of the traditional Neapolitan cousine.
INGREDIENTS for 4 servings
350/400 gr of spaghetti
1 kg of clams, scrubbed and purged
4 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
½ glass of white wine
2 cloves garlic
1 tablespoon chopped parsley
Freshly ground white pepper or dried red pepper
Scrub the clams very well under cold water and then let them soak in a bowl with cold water for at least 30 minutes.
Fill a large pot with water, add a generous pinch of salt and bring it to a boil.
Put a large saucepan on the stove at a low heat. Add oil and garlic, mix together using a wooden spoon. When the garlic is lightly browned, add the clams and the wine. In few minutes the wine will evaporate.
Put the lid on top and leave it to heat up so that all the clamshells open (~10 min). Get rid of any clams that haven’t opened. Remove clams from the pan and set them aside.
Line a strainer with 2 coffee filter and ladle through the clam juice, making sure not to ladle the juice from the bottom of the pot that might contain sand. Reserve the juice. In the meantime cook the pasta al dente. Add the clams and the reserved juice in the large saucepan, cover and heat while you drain the pasta. Add the pasta in the saucepan with the clams, season with parsley and pepper. Toss well to combine. Serve the pasta onto a large plate.
Enjoy it sipping a Chardonnay!