March 7, 2010

Linguine and Clams

So this one is really Mikey's special. Today (or more like on the 4th) we decided to do clams and linguine rather than another attempt at linguine and shrimp- which was equally as awesome. Anyway, the cost for this meal was literally only $2.00. We had everything we needed in the pantry so all we had to buy was mushrooms and half and half. We used fresh mushrooms instead of canned and canned clams instead of fresh. Why? Because it was cheaper. We cut the original (family) recipe in half for the two of us but we agreed that next time we wouldn't. The recipe below is the halved version but next time we would double it and use 3/4 pounds of pasta instead because we like a little more sauce for this dish and basically because it was just more for us to eat...

What You'll Need:
1 (or 2) can of chopped clams
1/2 pound linguine
1/2 T minced garlic
1/2 T dried basil
1/4 t oregano
1/8 t garlic powder
2 T butter
2 T olive oil
1/8 C white wine
1/8 C half and half
6 mushrooms
1/2 T cornstarch if needed
salt and pepper to taste

First we usually do the prep. Today, this meant washing and cutting mushrooms. One of the things we've trained ourselves to do right away is start the pasta water. There's nothing worse than being in the middle of cooking and realizing you still have to wait for the pasta because you forgot. So, we did that right after we cut the mushrooms.

Next we got a large pan, the one we use for pretty much everything, to saute the mushrooms in.
Butter. Mushrooms. Two items and it already smelled amazing. So, add the butter and oil to the hot pan then add the mushrooms. Now is also the best time to start the water for the pasta. Add salt to the water to help the process along.

When the mushrooms look glossy and start to shrink add the garlic. Let that heat through until it smells even more amazing then add the herbs. Turn the heat to low and just let everything heat through together. The mushrooms should be dark now and pretty soft.
Soon after this, the water should be boiling. Add the pasta to it when it is.

Now the mushrooms are ready for a little clams and alcohol. Open the clams and pour both clams and juice into pan and bring to a simmer. Next add wine, half and half, and garlic powder. Cover and simmer 5 to 10 minutes.
Don't forget about the water. When its boiling drain it but don't rinse it.

The sauce is suppose to be thick enough to really cover the noodles. Three things can fix a runny sauce. One is adding the noodles to the sauce so the starch thickens it, another is to let the sauce sit on a low heat for a couple minutes without stirring, or the third is to mix cornstarch into some wine or half and half and pour and stir into the sauce (which is what we did). Cover and simmer an additional 5 minutes.

When the sauce is the right consistency, fold the linguine into the sauce on low heat and mix well.


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