Il Mulino's Linguine Vongole: Simple Dish, Needs Attention
I'm not sure I'd call linguine vongole a grease-ball dish, but
it is lowly. And it's one of my favorite pasta dishes to make, since clams are delicious, the dish is inexpensive, and it's easy. Fill a big pot with water that you've salted liberally. As you're waiting for it to come to a rolling boil, clean your clams, then heat a sauté pan with olive oil over medium heat. Garlic fiends can brown garlic with diced shallots at this point, but I use a slice to flavor the oil, then remove it after a few minutes. Add clams and white wine. As the alcohol burns off, add pours of broth (seafood or shellfish if you can), red pepper flakes if you'd like, and wait for your clams to open. I chop a ton of Italian flat-leaf parsley and grate a whisper of parm for a lovely simple meal.
Il Mulino's was satiating but not quite right. They were generous with the clams -- and garlic -- but the pasta was overdone and starchy. As these folks do in their pasta experiment, I wish the chef had given the dish more love.
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