The Ardent Epicure

An Ode to the Pleasures of Food

12:37 AM

Simple Clam Pasta

Posted by Truffle Shuffle

 Clam Pasta
Here is a recipe for a simple clam pasta I made recently.  Sorry it took so long to get it posted (technical difficulties). Tto learn more about clams and other shellfish, please visit our Food of the Day post on shellfish.

About 1/2 pound of your favorite pasta (I prefer whole grain or wheat pastas when possible)
About 13-15 oz.  canned chopped clams
Approximately 8 oz. shiitake mushrooms
2 tbsp. chopped garlic (for this recipe, I prefer the pre-chopped kind that comes packaged in oil)
2-3 leaves of fresh basil
Small chunk of parmigiano reggiano cheese
About 4 oz. and 1 tbsp. high-quality extra virgin olive oil (trust me, the good stuff will make a difference)
About 1 tbsp. butter
2.5 tbsp. Italian seasoning
3/4 tbsp. crushed red peppers
Freshly-ground black pepper and sea salt (to taste)

Rarely do I follow recipes when making any food, so the amounts listed here are pretty much estimates.  You can play with the numbers to make the pasta how you like it.

Once the water is boiling, add your pasta, and boil until the texture meets your personal preference (I like mine soft, but some people prefer it to be al dente.)  Once the pasta is done, you can drain it and set it aside.
While the pasta is boiling, place your mushrooms, and clams in a pan heated with 1 tbsp. or so each of butter and olive oil.  As the clams start to cook, add your Italian seasoning, the red peppers (you can adjust the amount to fit your taste, but remember that the mixture will be added to a bunch of pasta), and salt and pepper to taste.
Cook the mixture, stirring to incorporate, until the clams start to make popping noises, then take the pan off of the heat.

Place your drained pasta in bowls, and split the remaining olive oil between them.  There should be enough olive oil in each dish to coat all of the pasta, and have a small pool of oil in the bottom of the bowl.  Mix another tablespoon of the garlic into each dish (note that if you are using fresh garlic, you should add it to the mushroom and clam mixture to cook instead).  Mix the garlic into the pasta well, until thoroughly incorporated. Sprinkle sea salt over the pasta.
Add some of the clam mixture on top of each pasta dish, and mix it in slightly.  Grate the cheese on top of each dish, and garnish with stips of fresh basil (simply chop these coarsely before applying to the dish).
Serve with warm bread.  Enjoy!  Serves 2-3 adults.

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