This recipe is easy to make but you need to have all your ingredients ready, because it all cooks very quickly. It’s so delicious you will never want to order pasta and clams at a restaurant again, because nothing you order out will ever taste this good. Your family and friends will be wowed by this one. I promise!
It’s best to clean your clams earlier in the day and let them sit in the fridge so they are ready when you cook them.
Be sure to see my “Cook’s Notes” below for pasta water, how to clean the clams and how to make a lighter version of this recipe.
Makes about 6 servings
- 1 pound Angel Hair Pasta
- 4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 pint cherry tomatoes
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 6 cloves garlic, chopped
- 1 tablespoon fresh oregano, finely chopped (use dry if you don’t have fresh)
- A handful of fresh Italian parsley, finely chopped
- 1 cup fresh basil, torn
- 1 1/2 cups dry white wine
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 4 slices of prosciutto, chopped
- ½ stick butter
- Sprinkle of crushed red pepper flakes
- Black pepper and Salt
- Grated Parmesan cheese
- 3 pounds of small clams, cleaned and scrubbed (see notes below on how to clean clams)
Fill large pot with heavily salted water and bring to a boil. While water comes to a boil, heat another large pot and add olive oil over medium high heat. Add tomatoes, onions and garlic to the pot, season with a sprinkle of crushed red pepper flakes, oregano, parsley, salt, black pepper and sugar. Sauté until the tomatoes and onions are soft, about 10 minutes. Turn up the heat and then add chopped prosciutto and wine.
Cook for about 5 minutes and then add butter into pot and melt. Turn the heat back down to medium and add the clams. Cover the pot and cook clams until they open, about 8-10 minutes.
Remove any unopened clams and discard them. If they don’t open, they are bad and you should toss them.
Add pasta to boiling water and cook pasta for only 3 or 4 minutes making sure to stir so it doesn’t stick. Strain and add pasta right into the pot with the clam sauce and toss. Pasta will still be firm because it will finish cooking in the hot clam sauce.
Add basil and a good handful of grated Parmesan cheese to the pasta. Taste and add more salt and pepper if needed. Cover for 2 to 3 minutes to allow the sauce to absorb into the pasta and serve.
* How to clean the clams. Place all the clams in a bowl and fill with enough cool tap water to cover all the clams. Let the clams sit for 20 minutes. During this time, they will spit out any sand from inside their shells.
Then remove the clams one at a time and rinse and scrub each one under running water with a clean washcloth. Place in a bowl inside the refrigerator until ready to use.
* Tip for salting pasta water when making pasta. I noticed that when I teach people to cook and we make pasta they never put enough salt in the water when boiling the pasta. My tip is to put about a palm full of salt in a whole pot of boiling water. Taste it with a spoon. If it tastes like the ocean, then it has enough salt in it.
* If you want to make a healthier, lighter version of this recipe you can use multi grain pasta, two tablespoons of olive oil, no butter, and replace the wine with low sodium chicken or vegetable broth.Print