Linguine vongole

by Luke Robinson

A classic Italian dish of pasta and palourde clams


For the clams:
500g palourde clams
40ml rapeseed oil
2 banana shallots, peeled and sliced
4 cloves of garlic, crushed
20g thyme
200ml white wine
1 lemon

For the pasta:
400g freshly extruded linguini
50ml extra virgin olive oil
4 red chillies, de-seeded and finely chopped
8 cloves of confit garlic
30g butter
4 tbsp chopped flat leaf parsley


Tap the clams again the side of the sink one by one to make sure they are alive (they should close when you tap them) and there aren’t any that are full of sand and grit. Give them a good wash in cold water, then drain and set aside.

You’ll need a large pan with a lid, and the ingredients need to be prepped and at hand. Set the pan over a high heat until very hot and starting to smoke. Add in the rapeseed oil and swirl so the base is completely covered, then add the clams and all the aromatics except the lemon and the wine.

Give the pan a good shake with the lid on, before quickly adding the wine. Add in the clams and as soon as they are all open pour all the ingredients in to a large tray to cool. Working quickly, pick the meat from half of the clams and discard any shells that have not opened. Season the clam juice with salt and lemon juice to taste.

Store the clams in the fridge in a small amount of the juice. Put the remaining juice in a squeezy bottle or jug in the fridge.

For the main dish, get a large pan of boiling water on the go and season with enough salt to make it taste like sea water. Cook the pasta according to packet instructions.

Meanwhile, in a big frying pan with a thick base lightly fry the chilli and garlic in the olive oil, taking care not to burn the garlic. Add in the butter and the reserved clam juice.

Once the pasta is ready, drain it, reserving a small amount of the cooking water. Add the pasta to the frying pan, throw in the parsley, clam meat and shells, then toss over a high heat to reduce the cooking liquor and coat the linguini, adding the cooking water if needed.

Finally, adjust the seasoning with a squeeze of lemon. Serve while hot.

Recipe: Luke Robinson