500 gmclams100 mlextra-virgin olive oil, plus extra to serve (optional)135 gmzucchini, cut into 1cm diceTo taste:fine sea saltTo taste:freshly ground black pepper600 gmgood-quality dried squid-ink bavette1small garlic clove, finely chopped100 mldry white wine2 tbspchopped flat-leaf parsley
If they haven’t been purged, place the clams in a cool part of the house in a solution of cool water and sea salt for several hours or overnight (if you refrigerate them, they’ll close up and won’t “spit out” the sand). Use 30gm salt to each litre of water. Drain and set aside.
Heat half of the extra-virgin olive oil in a frying pan over medium-high heat until just before it begins to smoke and add the zucchini. Season with the sea salt and black pepper and cook until the zucchini is tender, continuously turning the pieces so that they brown but don’t burn. Set aside. Cook the pasta in abundant salted boiling water until al dente and drain.
About 2-3 minutes before the pasta is cooked, heat the remaining extra-virgin olive oil in a separate large saucepan until it just begins to smoke and carefully add the clams. Make sure the clams have been well drained of water before adding them to the pan otherwise you may get unwanted flames. Add the garlic and cook for about 30 seconds before adding the white wine. Cook until all the clams have opened and the alcohol is cooked out of the wine (when the sauce no longer tastes bitter). Set aside for a minute. Drain the pasta, add to the clams with the zucchini and combine. Season with a little more sea salt and black pepper and add more extra-virgin olive oil if desired (I add lots). Mix the chopped parsley through the pasta and serve immediately.
Note This recipe is from Pasta Artigiana by Nino Zoccali, published by Murdoch Books, $49.99, hbk. It has been reproduced with minor GT style changes.
This recipe is from the August 2012 issue of Australian Gourmet Traveller.