Spaghetti Vongole Bianco

Or spaghetti with clams (as opposed to a clams in a red sauce, which is made with tomatoes).

This is quick and it is easy, but my fresh clams were not particularly cheap. Recipe to serve 2 greedies.


  • 1 kilo fresh clams (I got palourde clams, but if you have the luxury of choice, the smaller the better)
  • 300g spaghetti
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 small red chilli, finely chopped
  • handful of parsley, very, very finely chopped
  • 1/2 glass of white wine
  • olive oil

An hour at least before cooking, you have to purge your clams in cold salted water, apparently to get the sand out and  immediately discard any cracked ones, or ones that are open and won’t close.

Ok, so, the trick is to time this so your pasta and clams are cooked at the same time. For this purpose, I am assuming your pasta cooks in ten minutes. So get the pasta on as per the instructions on the packet and heat the oil in a wide, lidded pan. When the olive oil is warm, add your chilli, garlic and half the parsley. Cook for about a minute over a medium – low heat. The garlic must not brown. Add your white wine and bring to a hard simmer and cook for 3 or 4 minutes and then put in your clams and put the lid on the pot. Cook for around 5 minutes, shaking the pan occasionally to encourage the clams to open. As soon as the clams are all open, remove the lid. The pasta should be cooked by now, so drain it off. Stir in the remainder of your parsley into the clams, and pour the clams and the sauce over the pasta, mixing well. Pick out any clams that didn’t open and discard them. Scoff.