Musings from the The Literary Lion, Peter Miller
Made for celebrating the birthday of Albert Marchetti
100 top neck clams
2 jumbo white onions
1 bunch dill
1 bunch parsley
1 bunch basil
2-3 sprigs of oregano
2 fennel heads with prominent fronds
12 cloves garlic
½ cup extra virgin unfiltered olive oil
½ bottle pinot grigio
3-4 stalks celery
4 seeded organic lemons
12 seeded mini bell peppers
½ lb Parmigiano-Reggiano
2lbs spaghettini or another thin pasta
Preparation: Finely chop the onions, peppers, celery, and fennel and put together in a bowl. Halve all but a few of the cloves of garlic and set it aside. Finely chop the dill, parsley, basil, and oregano and set it aside. Thoroughly rinse the clams in cold, salted water.
1. Using 1/2 cup of extra virgin unfiltered olive oil, sauté the halved garlic cloves until lightly browned.
2. Add onions, peppers, celery, and fennel and cook for 1-2 minutes. Add the pinot grigio.
(It is recommended at this stage that the mixture possibly be separated into 2 different pots for more even cooking, as it is important to properly cook the clams. Do not overcook the clams – they can become very tough!)
3. Once the sauce is boiling again, add the clams. Lid the pot(s) and steam until all clams have opened.
4. Cook spaghettini until al dente. Before placing the pasta in a bowl, crush the remaining cloves of garlic in your palm and rub it inside the bowl. Lightly oil the pasta and mix thoroughly. Add sauce mixture and mix again to infuse the flavor into the pasta.
5. Serve. Add chopped spices and cheese to taste.