Spaghetti vongole a light, summery dish that should be kept as simple as possible.
Ingredients – 4 servings:
· Black Spaghetti from my fav Little Italy supermarket
· 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil plus more for drizzling
· 1 fennel bulb, finely chopped, plus 2 tablespoons coarsely chopped fennel fronds and more for garnish
· 2 garlic cloves, chopped
· 1 red onion, chopped
· 4 peppadews or 1 red chilli pepper
· 1 teaspoon cognac or 1 t tablespoon white wine
· 1 cup of Crème fraiche
· 3 pounds clams (Buy it on a Saturday Rotterdam Blaak market for 5 Euros! )
· Salt & black pepper
1. Rinse the clams in cold running water, and scrub if necessary, then put them into a large bowl and cover with cold water. Salt generously and leave for a couple of hours, then drain and rinse well to remove any grit or sand.
· 2. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add pasta and cook, stirring occasionally, until almost al dente. Drain, reserving 1 cup pasta cooking liquid.
· 3. Meanwhile, heat 3 Tbsp. oil in another large heavy pot over medium heat. Add chopped fennel and garlic, onion, peppers; cook, stirring often, until softened but not browned, 2–3 minutes. Add cognac and Crème fraiche, then clams.
· Increase heat to high. Cover and cook until clams open, 4–7 minutes, depending on size of clams. As clams open, use tongs to transfer them to a large bowl (discard any that do not open).
· 4. Add the cooked pasta to the pan with the clams; increase the heat to medium-high or high and toss to combine. Remove from the heat; season with salt and pepper to taste. Divide among individual bowls and garnish with the parsley. Serve immediately.