Here's a super easy and delicious recipe that's a little special, too. Regular pasta and tomato sauce get dressed up with clams and fresh herbs in this recipe. Quick enough for a weeknight, but tasty enough to serve at a low-key dinner party. This serves 2 heartily with leftovers, or 4 if part of a larger meal. It's excellent reheated the next day.
3/4 pounds linguine, cooked al dente
1 Tablespoon olive oil
2 large garlic cloves, minced
1 28 ounce can whole peeled tomatoes, drained, juice reserved
1 can clams of your choice (I like whole baby clams), drained, 3 Tablespoons liquid reserved
2 Tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat and gently cook garlic until golden. If possible, use a skillet with high sides so you can toss the pasta with the sauce right in the pan.
Add tomatoes and break up each with the back of a wooden spoon. You could use kitchen scissors and snip them into pieces in the can after draining. My inner child likes how they burst open when smushed in the pan, though. Canned tomatoes that have already been crushed are another option, but crushing them yourself gives the sauce a better consistency.
Simmer over medium heat until the sauce has thickened, about 10 minutes. Add the clams, the reserved clam juice, and chopped parsley and cook until heated through. If the sauce has gotten too thick, add a little of the reserved tomato juice to loosen it up.
Toss with hot pasta and serve. Crusty bread for catching every drop of sauce is a must. Try with a slightly sweet chardonnay and a cucumber salad.