I have no cute story or anecdote about linguine with clam sauce. This dish is really just a combination of some of my favorite ingredients - pasta, clams, garlic, and of course parmigianno cheese.

I make this every few months when I get a hankering for it. It is always so satisfying. I love the simple briny sauce with loads of garlic and a little bit of creaminess for some parmigianno or romano cheese.

I actually based this recipe on, gasp, a really old Rachael Ray recipe that I found in my recipe binder. You can find the original recipe on the Food Network website. This will be one of the only times that you will see anything Rachael Ray related on this blog, so savor this post RR fans.

Follow up:

We made this a bit differently than Rachael’s recipe, starting with the fact that we used fresh clams. Though fresh clams are awesome, this would be down right delicious with some canned clams as well. You can make this either way.

Nick made some of his fantastic quick and dirty fresh pasta which we cut with the thin spaghetti attachment on our kitchen aid.

Fresh Linguine with White Clam Sauce
by Nick and Sara at imafoodblog.com

  • 2 dozen clams, size of your preference (we used tiny little necks) or 1 15oz can of whole baby clams
  • 1-2 tbsp olive oil
  • 6 cloves of garlic, finely minced
  • 1 heaping tbsp anchovy paste or 6 anchovy filets
  • 2 tbsp fresh thyme leaves or 1 1/2 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 cup dry white wine plus more if cooking the fresh clams
  • 1 cup clam juice or clam cooking liquid
  • 1 lemon, zested
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1/4 - 1/2 cup (or more) of romano or parmigianno cheese
  • 1 lb dried or fresh linguine or other thin pasta
  1. To cook the clams, place them in a deep saute pan and fill the pan with half white wine and half water so that the clams are almost completely covered (we threw some parsley into this mix too). Cook them until they just open. You don’t want to over cook or even fully cook them here since they will be put back in the pan at the end.
  2. Remove the clams and reduce this liquid down for a few minutes. The left over liquid can be used in place of the clam juice. If you don’t have a full cup you can supplement the difference with chicken broth or bottled clam juice. Set your cooked clams and your clam cooking liquid aside.
  3. In a large pot, boil and salt your pasta water. If using dried pasta, cook it very al dente because it will be added to the clam sauce to absorb some of the liquid.
  4. Heat the same pan or another deep saute pan over medium heat with the olive oil, add the garlic, and anchovy paste or filets. Saute until the anchovy paste or filets melt into the sauce (should only take a minute or so).
  5. Add the thyme and the white wine. Reduce the wine for a minute. Add the clam juice/cooking liquid and lemon zest. Add your drained pasta and the clams. Toss with the sauce for 2 -3 minutes.
  6. Right before serving add the parsley and cheese to your preference.

oh lawdy, was this good!

Garlic and anchovy paste.

Don’t let the anchovy paste scare you. It just adds a little to the brininess of the sauce. If you are already eating clams, then you shouldn’t really be concerned about the anchovies, which you can’t taste at all in the final product.

Almost there. This sauce really comes together so quickly.

Nick’s fresh pasta.

Get in my belly.

Writing this post has made me want to make this again really soon. Yum!

I will be submitting this dish to Presto Pasta Nights, founded by Ruth at Once Upon A Feast, and hosted by Joanne of Eats Well With Others.