This recipe has its roots back in B.C. No, I’m not talking about the time before Christ. (I know it’s actually B.C.E. or Before the Common Era, I just didn’t need the E for my purposes, so I went old school.) In this case, B.C. refers to Before Children. This recipe was first prepared in our kitchen while I was a new college graduate and Baker’s man was working and going to school part-time.
Money was very tight with student loans to be repaid, and dinner had to be easy to cook as well as economical. This recipe met both criteria, and it was delicious, too. Back then, it cost us about $2.25 for the entire meal, so it went into regular rotation on our meager menu plan. One thing we discovered was that when we used minced clams it appeared that there were more clams in the recipe. This was because the minced clams were cut smaller than chopped clams. As a result, they spread through the recipe more evenly. That’s why we use them instead. Of course, if you must have large pieces of clams, go with the chopped. On occasion, I have been known to go wild and use one can of each.
What I didn’t realize at the time, having never eaten linguine with white clam sauce before, was that the recipe I had memorized from an outdated waiting room magazine was actually a reduced fat version that was actually healthier than the original. Over the years, I have tweaked it a bit, and I always double the recipe to feed our brood. The best thing about it is that the longest part of the preparation is waiting for the water to boil to cook the pasta. I can still make a this recipe for under $5.00.
This recipe is good served with some nice sourdough bread and a salad. If you have Sue Chef over for dinner, you better serve some cheesy garlic bread on crack instead of plain sourdough. It’s her favorite. Of course, she also likes this version of cheesy garlic bread, too.
Whatever you decide to make will give you something to do while you wait for the water to boil. Seriously, that’s the most time consuming part of this recipe.
Give the recipe a try and leave a comment to let me know what you think. Thanks for visiting Patty Cake’s Pantry.
- 1 pound of Linguine noodles (white or whole wheat).
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- 2 (6.5 ounce) cans of minced clams
- Juice of one small to medium lemon (you can use 2 tablespoons of lemon juice concentrate if you don't have a fresh lemon
- 1 (6-8) ounce container of plain, unflavored, yogurt--No fat is okay to use here, but so is regular yogurt.
- ¼ cup Parmesan cheese (to taste)
- Put salted water on to boil for pasta.
- Drain canned clams, but reserve the liquid
- Peel and Mince Garlic
- Squeeze Lemon Juice
- Wait for water to boil. This is a good time to assemble the salad or prep garlic bread for the oven.
- Once water has come to a boil, drop pasta into hot water and stir until it has settled into the bottom of the pan.
- Set a timer so you will know when the pasta is cooked.
- Heat a large skillet over medium heat.
- Add 2 Tablespoons olive oil to the pan and wait 1 minute
- Add garlic to the pan and saute for 1 minute.
- Add clams and saute for 2 minutes.
- Add clam juice and bring to a boil.
- Add lemon juice and mix well, sometimes, the mixture starts to become opaque and thicken slightly at this point.
- Stir in yogurt, until it is well incorporated into the sauce and bring to just a boil.
- By this time, 10 - 12 minutes should have elapsed, and the pasta should be cooked.
- Drain Pasta put into a large bowl and toss with the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil.
- Pour clam sauce over the pasta and toss well.
- Sprinkle with Parmesan Cheese and serve