Everything feels so still right now. I am enjoying the solitude right now and the idea of curling up on the couch and escaping into a good book has me held hostage. The dark clouds and showers are perfect. My favorite things about fall are: Gigi wearing Babylegs with every outfit, spending way too much time in my sweatpants, baking cookies and cakes and muffins and breads, bright orange pumpkins on my dining table, watching favorite movies like The Apartment and Julie and Julia over and over again while eating all the Halloween candy… What are you favorite things about this season?
This time of year I love a rich pasta dish but I tend to get stuck on red and cream sauces. With fresh herbs like thyme still growing strong and shellfish available at the market, I decided to indulge in a different kind of pasta dish. Clams with Spaghetti cooked with shallots and white wine, fresh thyme and lemon zest. It’s still rich and indulgent but it is equally light and fun. Don’t forget to pick up a great bread to soak up all the wonderful sauce!
CLAMS WITH LINGUINI, WHITE WINE, LEMON, AND THYME
1 Tbs. extra virgin olive oil
2 Tbs. butter, plus 1 Tbs. for finishing the dish
2 1/2 lbs. clams (scrubbed and cleaned)
1 large shallot, minced
3 cloves garlic, minced
3/4 cup pinot grigio
5 sprigs fresh thyme
1/2 lb. linguini pasta
zest of one lemon
freshly ground black pepper
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Melt the olive oil and 2 tablespoons of butter in a large pot (that has a tight fitting lid) over medium high heat. Add the shallot and sauté until soft, about 3 minutes. Add the garlic and thyme and sauté until fragrant, about 1 minute. Season with a large pinch of salt and pepper.
Put the linguini in the large pot of boiling water. At the same time add the wine and clams to the large pot with the oil, butter, thyme and shallots. Put the tight fitting lid on the pot with the clams and steam for approximately 6 minutes or until all the clams have opened. Gently remove the clams from the pot with a slotted spoon and set on a large serving dish, discard any clams that have didn’t open.
Let the sauce continue to simmer and reduce while the pasta finishes cooking. When the pasta has finished cooking transfer 3 tablespoons of the pasta water to the sauce. Drain the pasta and dump it onto the serving platter with the clams.
Whisk in the remaining 1 tablespoon of butter to the sauce and pour it over the pasta and clams. Gently toss to combine and coat the pasta and clams with the sauce. Finish the dish with the zest of one lemon. Serve immediately.
CLAMS WITH LINGUINI