Recipe – Spaghetti alle Vongole


Make your dinner an extra special one with this Spaghetti alle Vongole, when the weather is warm you want to cook something fast and to be able to enjoy it alfresco with a glass of cold white wine!  This dish is perfect for exactly that. The pasta is warming and still carby yet the dish is light and reflects the sunshine.

I hope you’ll try it – the recipe is incredibly simple for something that tastes rather special, and clams are available quite easily at the moment and reasonably priced.

Spaghetti alle Vongole

Serves 2


300g small clams (carpet shell are great!)
350g spaghetti or fettuccini or linguini

30g butter
1 tbsp olive oil
2 tsp garlic, finely chopped

1 large shallot

½ medium heat red chilli, finely chopped

¼ tsp black pepper
150ml dry white wine
Small bunch of flat-leaf parsley, roughly chopped
Zest and juice of ½ a lemon

Cooking Instructions:

  1. Rinse the clams in cold running water, and scrub if necessary, then put them into a large bowl with a couple of tablespoons of flour and salt, cover them with cold water and leave for an hour or so.
  2. When you’re ready to use them drain and rinse to remove any grit or sand.
  3. Put the spaghetti into a large pan of salted boiling water and cook for a couple of minutes under the recommended time, until nearly done. Slightly more than aldente since it will continue cooking once its in the vongole sauce.
  4. Meanwhile, put half the butter and all the olive oil in a large pan over a medium heat and soften the shallots, garlic and chilli.
  5. Add the wine and simmer for 2 minutes before adding the drained clams, and turn up the heat.
  6. Cover and leave for a couple of minutes until most of them have opened. Discard any that are still closed.
  7. Drain the spaghetti and add to the pan along with the remaining butter. Toss well and leave for a minute.
  8. Then stir through the chopped parsley, black pepper, lemon zest and juice, season to taste and serve.

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