Spicy Clams & Pasta

Spicy Clams & Pasta

Chrissy Teigen Sunday night dinners have become a staple for my girlfriends and me. Not only are the recipes in Chrissy Teigen’s “Cravings” cookbook easy to follow, but so far all of them are amazingly delicious. So far I have hosted two Sunday night dinners featuring recipes from the “Cravings” cookbook. The first dinner, we went a little overboard, we made three different recipes – the crispy prosciutto salad, street corn and fish tacos (ALL amazing by the way!), so when it came time to plan the menu for our second dinner, we opted to try just one recipe and make it the star.

We decided on Pepper’s Spicy Clams and Pasta and set off to the best seafood counter in town, Santa Monica Seafood to get the best clams this side of the 405. Armed with clams, pasta, and Justin wine we returned to my place and let the cooking party begin. Pepper’s Spicy Clams and Pasta is a quick and easy recipe once you de-sand all the clams. My advice is to drop your clams in a large bowl of water for 30 minutes, pop open a bottle of wine (don’t drink it all – you still need some for the recipe!) and enjoy 20-30 minutes of girl talk until your clams are de-sanded, then it’s time to get to work!

Spicy Clams & Pasta

Kosher salt
12 oz dried linguine
1 stick (4 oz) unsalted butter
2 T extra virgin olive oil
8 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp. red pepper flakes
1/2 cup dry white wine
1/4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
2 lbs. Manila clams, scrubbed
1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley, plus more for garnish

In a large pot of heavily salted boiling water, cook the linguine until al dente according to the package directions. Reserve 1/4 cup of the pasta water, then drain the pasta and return it to the cooking pot.

Meanwhile, in a large skillet, heat the butter and olive oil over medium heat. When the butter foams, add the garlic and red pepper flakes and cook until the garlic is fragrant and very lightly golden, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the wine and pepper, increase the heat slightly, and cook until bubbling, about 2 minutes. Add the clams, increase the heat, cover, and cook just until the clams open, about 3 minutes.

Transfer the opened clams to the pasta pot. (If some clams are stubborn, re-cover the pan for another minute or two; if the clams still don’t open, ditch them.) Taste the sauce and add salt to taste.

Add any remaining cooked clams and all the clam liquid to the drained pasta. Warm through over medium heat, adding the reserved pasta water as needed to help bind the sauce. Toss in the parsley, divide the pasta and clams among bowls, and garnish with more parsley if you want.

De-sand yo clams
Sometimes clams have sand. You want no sand. So, first of all, see if there are any already opened clams. Tap on them; if they don’t try to close back up, toss them and let them rest in peace. Place the totally-sealed-shut clams in a bowl and cover with cold water. Let them sit for 20 minutes. You’ll see some sand in the bowl after they sit. Then carefully lift them out of the bowl and scrub all over their shells, especially the hinge, with a clean, stiff brush under running water to remove any extra grit.

Recipe from “Cravings” by Chrissy Teigen also found here.

Spicy Clams & Pasta

Week 46: Parmesan Broiled Tilapia

Broiled Tilapia

After spending the long weekend in San Francisco for both the USC and 49ers games, I was ready for a quick and easy dinner on Tuesday night. Not only is this fish dish flavorful, the fish is so moist, you will NOT believe it takes less than 10 minutes from fridge to plate. Next time, I’m thinking about subbing half the light mayo for greek yogurt to make this fairly healthy dish even healthier. I paired this tasty fish with a side of fingerling potatoes, red onion and brussels sprouts {look out for the recipe next week}.

Broiled Tilapia

2 Tilapia fillets
2 Tbsp Parmesan cheese
1 Tbsp light mayo
1 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
1/2 Tsp Freshly chopped dill
Freshly ground pepper

Broiled Tilapia

Set broiler on highest setting.

In a small bowl, combine the cheese, mayo, lemon juice and dill. Season with pepper, to taste.

Place tilapia fillets on a foil lines pan and broil for 3 minutes. Remove pan from over, flip fish fillets over and divide Parmesan mixture over the uncooked sides of the tilapia. Broil for an additional 3-4 minutes, until cheese is browned and fish is cooked. Top with additional dill and serve with lemon slices.

Recipe from Spend with Pennies.

Broiled Tilapia

Pesto Salmon

Either because I’m a procrastinator or because I’m a planner, I usually end up at the grocery store on Mondays or Fridays to buy my groceries for the upcoming week. This particular Monday was a great day for seafood sales- I was able to find a delicious half pound salmon fillet for 3 dollars- score! Then, when I went home to examine my treasure, I discovered the package had a recipe for pesto salmon- double score!

Of course I had a plethora of kale pesto to try out the recipe.  I paired it with some sauteed spinach to complete the meal.  One improvement or adjustment I might try next time is to add sliced tomatoes on top of the pesto for a more Italian flavor profile.


salmon fillet(s)
pesto, enough to cover your salmon
1 oz mozzarella cheese, per fillet
salt and pepper, to taste


Preheat the oven to 400 degrees and line a baking sheet with foil. Season the salmon well with salt and pepper and place on lined baking sheet.

Spread each piece of salmon with the pesto. Bake for 15-20 minutes. Remove salmon from the oven and top with shredded mozzarella cheese. Broil the salmon for 3-5 minutes until cheese has turned a golden brown.