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Linguine with Clams in White Wine Sauce: A Delicious Seafood Pasta Dish

Linguine with clams in white wine sauce is a classic Italian dish that is both simple to make and delicious to eat.

The dish consists of linguine pasta, fresh clams, garlic, white wine, and herbs. The combination of these ingredients creates a light and flavorful sauce that perfectly complements the tender clams and al dente pasta.

Linguine and clams in white wine sauce, steaming in a shallow bowl on a rustic wooden table. Lemon wedges and parsley garnish

To prepare this dish, you will need to start by cleaning and scrubbing the clams thoroughly to remove any sand or grit.

Then, cook the linguine in a large pot of salted boiling water until it is al dente.

While the pasta is cooking, sauté garlic in olive oil until fragrant, then add the clams and white wine.

Cover the pan and let the clams steam until they open, then remove them from the pan and set them aside.

Finally, toss the cooked pasta with the clam sauce and fresh herbs, and serve with the cooked clams on top.

In summary, linguine with clams in white wine sauce is a classic Italian dish that is easy to make and packed with flavor. With a few simple ingredients and some basic cooking techniques, you can recreate this restaurant-quality dish in your own kitchen.

Ingredients and Preparation

Linguine and clams in white wine sauce simmer in a large pot on the stove. Ingredients like garlic, parsley, and olive oil are arranged on the kitchen counter

To make a delicious linguine with clams in white wine sauce, you will need a few key ingredients and some preparation. Here are some tips to help you get started:

Pasta Selection

For the best results, choose a high-quality pasta such as linguine or spaghetti.

Look for pasta made with durum wheat semolina and water. Avoid pasta made with eggs, as it can overpower the delicate flavour of the clams.

Choosing Clams

Fresh clams are essential for this dish. Look for littleneck clams or manila clams at your local fish market. If fresh clams are not available, canned clams can be used as a substitute.

Herbs and Spices

Garlic, parsley, red pepper flakes, kosher salt, and black pepper are all essential ingredients for this dish.

You can also add basil, oregano, or thyme to add more flavour to the dish.

The Role of White Wine

White wine is a key ingredient in the sauce for linguine with clams. Look for a dry white wine such as pinot grigio, chardonnay, or sauvignon blanc. The wine adds acidity and depth of flavour to the dish.

To prepare the dish, start by cooking the linguine according to the package instructions.

While the pasta is cooking, heat a large pan over medium heat and add extra-virgin olive oil.

Add garlic and cook until fragrant, then add the clams, white wine, and other spices.

Cook until the clams open and the sauce has thickened slightly.

Once the pasta is cooked, drain it and add it to the pan with the clams.

Toss the pasta with the sauce and serve immediately, garnished with fresh parsley and a squeeze of lemon juice.

Cooking and Serving

Linguine and clams in white wine sauce being cooked and served

Achieving Al Dente Pasta

To prepare the linguine for your linguine with clams in white wine sauce, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.

Add the linguine and cook for about 8-10 minutes until it is al dente.

Al dente pasta is firm to the bite, but not hard. Drain the pasta and reserve about 1/2 cup of the pasta water.

Creating the White Wine Sauce

In a large skillet, melt 3 tablespoons of butter over medium heat.

Add 2 tablespoons of flour and stir until a paste forms.

Gradually pour in 1 cup of clam juice and 1 cup of white wine, stirring constantly until the sauce thickens.

Add 2 cans of chopped clams with their juice, 1/2 teaspoon of crushed red pepper flakes, and 1/2 cup of chopped tomatoes.

Cook for about 5 minutes until the clams are heated through and the tomatoes are soft.

Final Touches and Plating

Add the cooked linguine to the skillet with the white wine sauce. Toss the pasta with the sauce until it is coated evenly.

If the sauce is too thick, add some of the reserved pasta water to thin it out.

Garnish with fresh parsley, fresh basil, and grated Parmesan cheese. Serve immediately with crusty bread on the side.

Frequently Asked Questions

Linguine and clams in white wine sauce simmer in a large skillet on a stovetop. Steam rises from the pan as the pasta and shellfish cook together

What's the secret to a creamy white clam sauce?

The secret to a creamy white clam sauce is to use heavy cream. Adding heavy cream to the sauce gives it a rich and velvety texture. However, be careful not to add too much cream, as it can overpower the delicate flavour of the clams.

Can I use canned clams instead of fresh for pasta dishes?

Yes, you can use canned clams instead of fresh for pasta dishes. However, fresh clams are preferred for their superior flavour and texture. If you are using canned clams, make sure to drain them well and rinse them thoroughly before using them in your recipe.

Which white wine pairs best with clam linguine?

A light and crisp white wine like Pinot Grigio, Sauvignon Blanc, or Chardonnay pairs best with clam linguine. The wine should complement the delicate flavour of the clams without overpowering it.

Is there a traditional Italian method for making white clam sauce?

Yes, there is a traditional Italian method for making white clam sauce. The sauce is made by sautéing garlic and red pepper flakes in olive oil, then adding white wine and fresh clams. The clams are simmered until they open, and then the sauce is finished with butter and parsley.

What are some healthy aspects of eating linguine with clams?

Linguine with clams is a healthy dish that is low in fat and high in protein. Clams are a good source of iron, vitamin B12, and omega-3 fatty acids. The dish is also low in calories, making it a great option for those watching their weight.

What can I use as a white wine substitute when making clam sauce?

If you don't have white wine on hand, you can substitute it with chicken or vegetable broth. The broth will add flavour to the sauce without altering its texture or consistency.