Spaghetti with Clams and Shrimp

Spaghetti with Clams and Shrimp (Serves 5)

Spaghetti with clams and shrimp sauce is an easy pasta dish that will wow any seafood lover in your home!!  My kids love when I make this. In fact, my son can not resist dunking some bread in the sauce before I even boil the macaroni!! 

In my family it is a summertime favorite, and even a great fish recipe for Lenten Fridays, or Christmas Eve for the Feast of the Seven Fishes. For this dish I use the smallest clams that I could find.  In Italy when you eat this dish the size of the clams are comparable to the size of a dime.  To me they taste better than the larger clams and are a little more sweet. Locally the smallest clams I could find are New Zealand clams.  But ask your fishmonger for help.  He or she can guide you in the right direction as far as the types of clams to use.  But again, the smaller the better with this one.


3/4 Cup of Extra Virgin Olive Oil

10 Garlic Cloves

½ tsp. Red Pepper Flakes

16 oz. Whole Plum Tomatoes

1.5 lbs. Clams, Use the smallest clams you can find.  I get New Zealand, Rinse Well

1 lb. Colossal Shrimp (About 32 Shrimp)- Deveined and Cleaned

1 Tsp. Salt, Plus extra for the shrimp

½ Tsp. Black Pepper, Plus extra for the shrimp

¾ Cups Pinot Grigio

½ Cup Bottled Clam Juice 

12 Basil Leaves – Chopped

6 tbsp. Butter

1 lb. Spaghetti


Bring a pasta pot to boil.  Add salt.

Put the olive oil, garlic and red pepper flakes in a separate pan and heat on a very low flame until the garlic is cooked through.  

Mash the garlic with a fork right into the oil.  This gives the oil great flavor. 

Then add the clams and cover the pan with a lid for about 4 minutes until they start to open.  

Season the shrimp on both sides with salt and pepper.  Add the shrimp to the pan and cook for about 3 minutes on each side.  

Add the tomatoes, wine and clam juice, and 1 tsp. each salt and pepper.  Cover and cook for another 10 minutes.  

Add the butter and basil. Cook for another 5 minutes.

In the meantime, cook the pasta, reserve some pasta water and strain when al dente.  

Add the pasta to the sauce. Combine well, adding in the reserved pasta water until desired consistency is reached.  I usually use about ¼ cup.  


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