20 August 2008
If you’re like me – and judging by your masculine calves and cleft chin, you are – then you love seafood. Whether it’s fish, scallops, crab, or clams, seafood is a go-to dish when I’m looking for something delicious to make, while simultaneously fooling myself into thinking that I’m eating healthily, no matter how much butter I put on that piece of lobster. Seafood is always a crowd-pleaser, and when I cook for others, I make them sick far less often than I do with pork or poultry (there’s no such thing as chicken sashimi? Who knew?). Perhaps it’s because I spent my formative years on a yacht, voyaging around the globe with nothing but my joie-de-vivre attitude and adorable sailor suit, but seafood has always been a favorite of mine (I really fucking like seafood, if you’re not picking up what I’m putting down.) The other night I decided to break out one of my all-time favorite seafood dishes: linguine alle vognole. Appropriately, the name of this dish, literally translated, means: “If you make this dish for your next-door neighbor’s cute friend – you know, the redhead with the nice gams – she’ll totally let you touch her in the bad place, after she’s loosened up with a few glasses of wine.”
So skip that over-priced sushi place you were thinking about going to tonight, or that other over-priced sushi place you were going to make reservations at – we’re making linguine with clams! Hooooorrrraaaaaaayyyyyy!!!!!!
Purchase the following:
Little neck clams (but they don’t have necks, at all – so confusing!)
Cook, as such:
Salt some water, bring it to a boil, and throw in your linguine. In a pan, cook the pancetta until it’s nice and crisp. Eat the pancetta. Make more pancetta, remove, and crumble. In that same pan, lightly saute some garlic. Throw some wine in there (and your tummy), put in the clams, and cover. You’ll need to cook the clams for a few minutes, until they open up. You can also get them to open up by buying them a couple of bourbons, but I hope you like hearing about ungrateful kids and nagging wives, because those fuckers can really bend your ear. Once the clams are ready, check your pasta for doneness. Here’s a trick: check to see if your pasta is done by throwing one of the noodles against a wall or cabinet – this lets the others know that you’re not a chef to be fucked with, and that they’d better start getting good and al dente, unless they want to start getting good and dead. Right before you add your pasta, finish your sauce by throwing in a nice, big dollop of butter to get it smooth and silky (this is basically the culinary equivalent of the happy ending, only without all the shame and immediate regret.) Take the pasta directly from the water to the pan*, and toss around to coat. Add in some parsley and the pancetta, and transfer to that gay-ass platter you got at Bed, Bath & Beyond with your 20%-off coupon, but never get to use. Voila – linguine alle vongole. Mangiare!
*Listen, kids; your mother and I need to have a talk with you. You really don’t need to drain your pasta in a colander. Just pick it up with tongs and throw it right in the sauce. Pasta water is a good thing – maybe the best of things. And under no circumstances should you ever rinse your pasta. Rinsing pasta is for Canadians, losers, and douchebags – which is to say that rinsing pasta is for Canadians.