For Christmas, Luke’s parents gave me a pasta roller/cutter attachment for my Kitchenaid. I have been dying to use it, and finally had an opportunity last Friday night. Most people like to go out on Friday nights, to dinner, or a movie, or dancing, or whatever. I like to set aside a good hour and a half to make homemade pasta. Wild Child!
Homemade pasta calls for a truly spectacular pasta sauce, and my adapted version of Pioneer Woman’s Clam Sauce did the trick.
I might have made enough for two, and eaten both portions. It’s possible. I’m not saying I did, I’m just saying it’s POSSIBLE. Let’s move on.
This sauce is amazing, is all I’m saying. I was skeptical during the entire cooking process. I kept tasting it, and it tasted too… something. Or not enough… something. But with the addition of parmesan cheese at the finish, it was suddenly and miraculously perfect. Slam dunk the pfunk.
Pasta with Clam Sauce
(serves 2 restrained, or 1 indulgent adult)
1/2 pound fettucini
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 can (10 oz) clams, drained, juice reserved
1/3 cup white wine
juice of 1/2 lemon
1/3 cup milk
salt and pepper to taste
1/2 cup shredded parmesan cheese, plus more for garnish
6 yellow cherry tomatoes, cut into small chunks
Cook the fettucini until al dente*. Overcooked pasta will certainly ruin this beautiful dish!
Meanwhile, in a large skillet over medium heat, melt the olive oil and butter. Stir in the minced garlic and clams. Cook for a few minutes, until clams are heated through. Pour in the wine, scraping the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon. Cook until sauce is reduced and less watery, about 3-4 minutes. Reduce the heat and squeeze in the juice of 1/2 lemon. Pour in the milk. Add salt and pepper, stir well, and taste. If the sauce seems too thick, add some clam juice to thin it out. Add the parmesan cheese, and stir until the cheese is melted into the sauce. Add the drained pasta and toss until the pasta is well covered. Add chopped tomatoes, divide between two bowls, sprinkle with parmesan cheese, and serve. Enjoy!
*Just in case you’re unfamiliar with the term al dente, it’s when pasta is cooked to a point where there is still some resistance to it. It won’t be sticky when you bite into it, but it almost seems just undercooked. It’s hard to explain, but once you cook pasta al dente once, then you’ll get it. The point is that pasta should never be overcooked, and unless you shock pasta by rinsing it with cold water as soon as it’s done, it will continue to cook in it’s own heat. So always remove your pasta from the water it’s cooking in as soon as it reaches al dente, to avoid limp, swollen noodles. If it needs to sit while you are preparing sauce, toss with a little bit of olive oil to prevent the noodles from sticking together.