Sunday, May 4, 2008
Local Clams Do The Double
A few days ago, I was lucky enough to score about 10 pounds of freshly caught clams at The Olde Fish House in Matlacha on Pine Island, off the west coast of Florida. I'll post about the woderful owners, Jessi and Tom, later, but today, I am all about my clams.
I knew I wanted pasta and clam sauce from those clams...I called my sister. The last time I'd made clam sauce was at her house from one of her books with clams I'd bought at Grand Central's market. Pat and her husband, Sushil, have made Double Clam sauce more than once...I scribbled ingredients and methods...
Then turned to the task at hand.
Great clams. good olive oil, butter, fresh parsley, pasta cooked to perfection. But it melds plenty of garlic, olive oil, butter and white wine with the clams--some chopped, some still in their shells, which makes it double clam. It's a keeper of a recipe.
Ten pounds of clams makes enough for 8 to 10 people, but I couldn't entice a soul to my dinner table--so sad.
So I enjoyed it all on my own with a lovely Summers Estate 2007 Le Nude Chardonnay ($24), an unoaked, stainless steel aged wine with crisp flavors that matched the clam dish perfectly.
I like my clam sauce with great Parmesan, what can I say? There was enough juice when I was done for it to be mopped up with a piece of sourdough bread. Life is good. Next time, you are all welcome to join me!
Do The Double Clam Sauce for Pasta (Enough for 8 to 10 people...if they choose to join you for dinner)
10 pounds clams in shells, cleaned
24 cloves of garlic, chopped
1 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 cups white wine
1 cup pasta water
2 teaspoons red pepper flakes
1 stick butter
1 cup parsley, chopped
2 pounds linguini
1. Place half the clams into a stock pot with half the garlic, 1/4 cup olive oil and 1/2 cup wine. Bring all to a boil, and reduce to simmer, steaming until all clams open (discard any clams that do not open). Remove clams from pot. Strain and reserve cookng liquid. Chop clams and set aside.
2. In separate pot, bring water to boil. Add linguini and cook until just al dente.
3. While pasta is cooking, return first pot to medium heat. Add remaining olive oil, remaining garlic and white wine and red pepper flakes. Add remaining clams in shell and 1 cup pasta water plus the reserved liquid used to make the chopped clams. Bring all to boil, reduce to simmer and cook until clams open. Stir in butter and parsley, and cook until butter is melted.
4. To serve, place portion of pasta in shallow bowl. Top with about 8 to 10 clams in shells. Use ladle to add sauce to bowl. Pass with cheese for grating (for those of you who break all the rules the way I do...) and bread to mop up any remaining sauce.