Linguine with Clam Sauce and Vegetables

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From the Essential Pépin tv series, Episode 108: Cozy Carbs

Clams are a favorite at our house, and I make this recipe at least once a week in the summer. I like cherrystones, which are larger than littlenecks and meatier. Bring them just to a simmer. —Jacques Pépin

Serves 4 as a main course, 8 as a first course

1 pound linguine

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
2 medium onions, coarsely chopped (1 cup)
1 teaspoon fresh oregano leaves
4–6 large garlic cloves, sliced (1/4 cup)
2 dozen cherrystone clams, shucked, cut in half with scissors, and kept in their juices
1/2 cup dry white wine
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


1 tablespoon peanut oil
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
8–10 asparagus spears, trimmed, peeled, and cut into 1-inch pieces (1 cup)
1 1/4 cups chopped mushrooms (4 ounces)
2 medium zucchini, trimmed and cut into 1/2-inch dice (1 1/2 cups)
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 1/4 cups seeded and diced (1/2-inch) tomatoes
Freshly grated Parmesan cheese, for serving (optional)

Bring 4 quarts of salted water to a boil in a large pot. Add the pasta, stir well, and cook until tender but still slightly al dente.

MEANWHILE, FOR THE SAUCE: Heat the olive oil and butter in a large skillet until hot. Add the onions and sauté for about 2 minutes. Add the oregano and garlic and cook for about 30 seconds. Add the juices from the clams and the wine, and boil gently for 7 to 8 minutes. Add the clams and pepper and bring to a simmer. Set aside.

FOR THE VEGETABLES: When the pasta is cooked, drain it in a colander. Add the peanut oil and butter to the pot and heat until hot. Add the asparagus, mushrooms, and zucchini, season with the salt and pepper, and sauté for about 2 minutes. Toss in the tomatoes and heat briefly to warm them.

Divide the pasta among individual plates or transfer to a large serving platter. Spoon the hot clam sauce on top and arrange the vegetables on top of the pasta. Serve immediately, with Parmesan cheese, if desired.

Copyright © 2011 by Jacques Pépin. Used by permission of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. All rights reserved.

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