Spaghetti with Clams

I have been craving this dish for weeks now.

Over July 4th weekend we took a little road trip up to wine country and met friends for dinner at Cafe Citti, which also happened to be featured on Diners, Drive-in, and Dives.  Don’t ask me what category it falls into because we had a big debate over dinner about this and we agreed to agree that it falls into none of them.

When it came time to order our friend who recommended the restaurant told us the clam sauce is to die for.  So, of course, we naturally ordered the clam sauce.  Seeing as it was 100+ degrees that day and still in the 90s at dinner, I couldn’t think of a lighter dinner than linguini with white clam sauce.

Well I was wrong.  I had no idea that Cafe Citti made their white clam sauce with cream!  To make matters even worse, our friend then informed us that they are known for their red clam sauce, not their white.  I definitely had order envy and picked my way through my dinner trying to avoid the cream sauce at all costs.

So when it came time to picking this Sunday night meal I went straight for Giada’s Everyday Italian cookbook and her spaghetti with clam sauce recipe.  Fresh clams, garlic, shallot, white wine, and parsley – exactly what I was looking for.  Ok there might have been a little butter added but no cream!

First you saute chopped shallots and garlic in olive oil.

Then you add the wine, clams, salt, pepper, and parsley and let steam covered for 6 minutes.

When you take off the lid you have amazing deliciousness that looks like this:

Stir in a tablespoon of butter, toss with pasta, and garnish with some lemon zest.  How easy is that?

The dish was exactly what I was craving – light and refreshing.

I almost might dare to say it was a little too light.  When I make this dish again I might add in some red pepper flakes and perhaps some lemon juice.  But all in all a successful and yummy Sunday night dinner.

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