2 pounds small or medium clams, scrubbed well
1/2 cup dry white wine
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
12 ounces linguini
1/4 cup olive oil
4 garlic cloves, minced
pinch of crushed red pepper flakes
2 tablespoons minced fresh basil
1/2 cup chopped italian parsley
Bring 3 to 4 quarts of salted water to a boil in a large pot.
Place the clams, wine and black pepper in a large skillet.
Cover and turn the heat to high.
Cook the clams, shaking the pan every so often.
After the clams have been cooking for about 3 minutes, check to see if any have opened.
Keep checking; once about 3/4 of clams have opened, transfer to a bowl.
Strain the cooking liquid through a sieve lined with cheesecloth to remove any sand.
Measure the strained liquid.
If it is less than a cup, add enough wine to make it 1 cup.
Add the linguini to the pot of boiling water.
While the pasta is cooking, combine the olive oil, garlic and crushed red pepper flakes in a large skillet.
Turn the heat to medium.
As soon as the garlic begins to sizzle, turn the heat to low.
Cook until the garlic begins to turn golden (about 4 minutes.)
Add the reserved cooking liquid to the skillet and raise the heat back up to medium.
Let simmer for about 2 minutes and then add the minced basil and half of the parsley.
Add the clams back to the skillet and cover.
Cook until all of the clams have opened, discarding any that don't open.
When the pasta is almost done cooking, drain and toss it into the skillet.
Continue cooking until the pasta is tender but firm (al dente.)
Transfer to a serving bowl and garnish with the additional chopped parsley.
Makes 2 to 3 servings