Linguine with Clams (Linguan with Claims)

Written By Lucy Pinder on Friday, September 11, 2009 | 8:33 PM


  • 400 g (14 oz) Linguine pasta (cooked "al dente" - see How to cook perfect spaghetti)
  • 500 g (1.1 lb) Fresh clams
  • 60 ml (2 fl oz) Extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 Dried chilli (medium hot)
  • 1 Clove of Garlic
  • 60 ml (2 fl oz) White wine
  • A handful of flat leaf parsley (roughly chopped)
  • Salt for seasoning

Note: I've put "preparation 10 minuets" because this is what it takes to prepare the Ingredients and rinse the clams. I am not taking in account the 2 hours while the clams are purifying in the water, because usually in this two hours we can do many other things that are not related to the cooking itself.


Firstly, we need to clean the clams. Put them in a large bowl and fill it with fresh water and then add some salt. Recreating this micro environment , they will open and start to eject the dirt and sands they have inside. It's important to do this because a little grain of sand can really damage your teeth. Another good tip to get them opened is the "silence", so do not be noisy and do not toss the water. Leave them alone for a while; some say ½ an hour is enough and some say 4-5 hours, but personally I have found that after a couple of hours they can be ready for the next stage.

After a couple of hours of salty water immersion, give them a good rinse under fresh running water.

Then, put them into a pan.

Close the pan with a lid and let the heat (medium/high) to open them all. Just cook them until the are open, no more no less, and discard those that do not open at all. At this stage you can also drizzle with a few drops of olive oil.

With the pan closed, hold the lid down and shake the pan so that all the clams receive the same amount of heat; otherwise the ones that remain in the top may not open because the do not receive enough heat.

When the clams open, they will release the liquid they have inside.

Filter the liquid into a small bowl.

Then, set the filtered liquid aside.

Take ¼ of the clams available, remove the meat and chop them.

Then, chop the garlic and the chilli. If the chilli is "very hot", may be you can chop half of it (or even less) because this dish should be mildly hot.

Sweat off the garlic and chilli together (medium heat).

When the garlic starts to change colour, add the wine and let it evaporate for about 3 minutes.

Then, add the chopped clams.

Immediately after the chopped clams, add the rest of the clams.

Now, raise the heat from medium to high and add the filtered water.

Cook for about 5 minutes.

About 30 seconds before turning the heat off, add the parsley and...

...season with salt.

Meanwhile your pasta was already boiling. When the pasta is al dente, drain it and add it to the pan containing the clam sauce.

Toss and stir everything together on high heat for about 40 seconds.

Serve it and remember, a good glass of chilled white wine is the perfect accompaniment.

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