Clams with Linguine and Caper-Butter Sauce
- 1 pound dried linguine
- salt and fresh ground black pepper
- 2 tablespoons butter, divided
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 shallot, thinly sliced
- ½ tablespoon red pepper flakes
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 cup white wine
- 25 littleneck clams, scrubbed and cleaned, or more to taste
- ¼ cup fresh lemon juice (about 2 lemons)
- ½ cup chopped fresh parsley
- 1 tablespoon drained capers
- Add salt to 5 quarts of water in a large pot and heat to a rolling boil; add linguine; cook until strands are firm to the bite or according to package instructions. Drain and toss with 1 tablespoon butter to coat noodles; set aside.
- Heat oil over medium heat in a high-ledged pot until shimmering. Add shallots with pinch of salt; stirring until softened, about 1 minute. Add chile flakes and garlic; cook until fragrant and before garlic browns, about 30 seconds.
- Add white wine; use a wooden spoon to scrape up anything on bottom of the pan.
- Add clams; adjust heat to maintain a simmer; cover and cook until clams have opened, about 6 to 8 minutes. Remove clams from pot and place in a bowl. Discard any that did not open.
- Reduce liquid in pot until it reaches a thicker consistency and cloudy color, about 6 minutes. Stir 1 tablespoon butter, lemon juice, parsley and capers. Cook together to allow flavors to blend, about 1 minute; adjust seasoning as needed with salt and pepper. Pour clams, their juices and pasta into the pot; tossing to coat noodles with sauce until absorbed, about 2 minutes.
- Divide between bowls and eat immediately.
Keep in mind that capers are very salty, so don’t overdo it with seasoning the dish. Have a hard time finding fresh clams? Use mussels instead, which are widely available at most grocery stores and will give a similar flavor. Throw out any mussels that don't open when cooked.
What others are saying
Aja A says:
I was on the fence about this one originally. I did hold back on the amount of capers as they are extremely salty. The caper flavor was still very prevalent. I added a little bit more red chile flakes for some extra heat in the pasta.
Sam Dalton says:
This was my first time preparing clams and I was pleasantly surprised. They were also surprisingly easy to prepare. My wife was also very impressed, and she is more of a picky eater. This also makes for a nice date night dish.
Monica Allen says:
I made this recipe (without capers) and it was really delicious. I don't mind eating the extra carbs with pasta and wine, occasionally. Especially when it involves clams! Yum!
Sheila Long says:
I love the salty capers, they really add a nice flavor balance to this dish. Also, I used mussels instead of clams.
Sarah Gray says:
I love this recipe, especially the butter and caper sauce. I recommend using unsalted butter because capers lend so much flavor already. I also used fresh linguine, best decision ever.