I've made this dish so many times, but last night's was the absolute best. It was so good I ate it cold for breakfast the next morning--still delicious and savory. I figured I should make note of what went right about it for our own future reference; Ryan cooks best with detailed instructions. (Yes, I have selfish intentions by putting this recipe in writing.)
This is my go-to recipe because it's so easy, and we usually keep its ingredients on stand-by in the pantry. If we need a store run, it's often just for the parsley. It's simple, but not exactly fast. The tomatoes need time to cook.
What it Takes to Serve 3 Big Portions:
- Linguine: half pound dry
- Diced or Pureed Tomatoes: 28 ounces or 2 regular cans
- Fresh Parsley leaves: 1.5 - 2 cups trimmed and chopped
- Fresh Garlic: 3 smashed/minced cloves
- Minced Canned clams: 3 cans (like the tuna fish sized cans). Don't drain them yet.
- Clam Juice: 1 jar
- Olive Oil: 1/2 cup
- Salt and Red Pepper to taste: Remember that the clams already have a high salt content.
- A big skillet and a regular sauce pan/pot
1) Avoid soggy pasta. Start boiling water in the saucepan/pot. (When it does boil, don't add the noodles just yet. Turn the heat down to low and cover it. That way it's ready for your pasta whenever you are. You can bring it back to a boil in an instant when it's pasta time.)
1) Saute the garlic and red pepper flakes in the skillet in olive oil over low heat until the garlic is almost golden. It will burn very easily!
3) Add your tomatoes to the skillet and turn up the heat to medium. Stir a few times and let it thicken.
4) Add the bottled clam juice to the skillet. Let the sauce bubble away until the liquid evaporates and it gets thick.
5) Meanwhile, throw your pasta into the pot and bring its water back to a boil. Stirring the noodles will keep them from sticking together into a log.
6) Drain your pasta when it's flexible but a little too chewy/hard for eating. Add the drained pasta into the skillet with the sauce.
7) Drain the canned clam juice into the skillet; save the meat (you don't want it overcooked and tough). Let the pasta soften by absorbing this liquid.
8)When the pasta is at its desired done-ness, toss in the clam meat and the fresh parsley. Mix well and serve.