Clams usually pair best with white wines, however the crispy prosciutto and creamy white basil sauce on this pasta adds enough “umph” to the otherwise dainty clam flavors, that it makes a great match for our delicate 2014 Hillside Whole Cluster Pinot Noir. This wine is gently hand rolled on whole Pinot Noir clusters during the fermentation process, creating a gorgeous and easy-drinking wine.
Clam Pasta with
Creamy White Basil Sauce
- 3 oz. prosciutto
- olive oil
- 8 cloves garlic, peeled & smashed
- 2-4 dozen fresh clams
- 1 c. white wine
- ½ c. water
- crushed red pepper flakes
- 1 lb. angel hair pasta
- 2 tbsp. butter
- ½ c. heavy cream or whole milk
- 1 c. grated parmesan cheese
- 4 oz. grated fontina cheese
- ¼ c. fresh basil, chopped
- 2 tbsp. fresh parsley, chopped
- 2 tbsp. fresh oregano, chopped
- black pepper
1. Place a large sauté pan over medium heat. Add a drizzle of olive oil and once hot, add the prosciutto. Cook 2-3 minutes per side. Remove and drain on paper towels.
2. To the same skillet, add a drizzle of olive oil and 4 cloves of garlic. Cook over medium heat until fragrant and golden brown. Discard garlic. Keep the remaining oil and add 2/3 of the clams, white wine, water, and a pinch of crushed red pepper flakes. Cover the skillet and let simmer for 10-12 minutes, until the clams open, and remove from the pan. Bring the remaining liquid to a boil and let it reduce by about half. Once reduced, pour the liquid through a strainer and into a bowl. Reserve the clam liquid for later. Remove the clam meat from the shells.
3. Repeat step 2 for the remaining clams, however leave these clams in the shell.
4. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and cook the pasta until al dente. Drain.
5. In a pan, add the shelled clam meat, reserved clam liquid, and butter. Cook 2-3 minutes, then add the pasta, heavy cream, parmesan cheese, and fontina cheese. Toss well until the pasta is coated in cream sauce and the cheese has melted into the sauce.
6. Remove from the heat, add the basil, parsley, oregano and black pepper. Garnish with the crispy prosciutto and cooked, clams in the shell.
recipe adapted from Half Baked Harvest