Clams and spaghetti- Mì Xào Hến Kiểu Ý.

Vietnamese food

Hope everyone had a good Labor day weekend.

We had a good time here in Kim’s Kitchen with a brand new apprentice making egg pasta.

Make 4 servings

2-3 pounds of small clams (little neck /venus, etc.)
1 cup water
1/4 cup olive oil
4 garlic cloves. minced
1/2-1 teaspoon dried flake red pepper
1/4 cup coarsely chopped parsley leaves and extra for garnish
Freshly ground black pepper and salt
1 pound fresh egg pasta in previous post
  1. Clams from grocery stores are purged (got rid of mud and sand) and only need to have a good scrub with a brush and water. Rinse well.  
  2. In a large skillet, add the clams and water, cover and cook over medium high heat a few minutes until the clams start to open.  Open the lid, immediately take the opened clams out and put them in a bowl or plate to caught any accumulated liquid.  Be patient, some hesitate and take longer time to open but discard any clam that don’t open after your patient ran out about 10-15 minutes.   Remove the skillet from heat.  Let it sit for a few minutes.   Pour the liquid from the pan into a cup or bowl slowly and stop  when  any trace of sand present.  Discard the remaining sandy liquid.   Rinse and dry the skillet. Keep clams in their shells or remove them all but 8 whole in shell for garnish.
  3. In a large pot of boiling salted water (1 tsp fine sea salt or 1.5 -2 tsp flaky salt per 1 liter water) cook the spaghetti  and stir occasionally until just al dente ( nearly done), then drain the pasta well but do not rinse with cold water.  Reserve one cup of cooking liquid.
  4.   Reheat the skillet with  olive oil over medium high heat. Add the minced garlic and crushed red pepper and cook over moderately high heat, stirring occasionally, until the garlic is just slightly changed the color and fragrant, about 1 minutes.  Add clams,  clam juice (liquid from cooking clams) 1/2 chopped parsley, make a quick stir.  Then add spaghetti . Toss over moderately high heat just until the spaghetti  is tender and the mixture is saucy.  Add more hot liquid  if necessary .  Sprinkle the remaining chopped parsley and some ground black pepper, toss well, taste and add more salt if needed.  Then transfer the spaghetti and clams to shallow bowls/plate,  and serve right away with or without garnish.


*Note: my kids like to add a little bit of grated cheese (Parmesan or pecorino) on hot spaghetti to make them more flavorful.   Sometime I replace some clam juice with 1/4-1/2 cup of white wine.   



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