Fish on Fridays: Linguine with Clam Sauce

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We're dreaming of clam bakes and lobster rolls served oceanside, but we're still leaping over snowbanks here in New York.

Beach weather is months away, but a quick dinner of Linguine with Clam Sauce might help you conjure summer.

We checked in with Wild Edibles in Grand Central Market this morning. Today, they have Little Neck Clams from Connecticut and Manila Clams from Washington State.

Manila clams tempt us with their pretty shells and the fish guy said they are at their peak and "perfect with pasta." Still we like using Littlenecks since they are harvested closer to home. Local clams are very eco-friendly.

If you've never made linguine with clams before, you'll be surprised how fast and easy it is. Boiling the water for the pasta is the most time consuming part.

Linguine with Clam Sauce is a classic and most recipes are similar. We like working from Martha's basic recipe and experimenting from there. We add capers sometimes, change out the linguine for angel hair and other pastas, or substitute raw, peeled shrimp for the clams.

If you make clam sauce, here's some tips. Use a wide pan when you make this recipe. The clams open up faster and don't overcook as easily when there's more room in the pan. If have a big Dutch oven, use that lid on your skillet for this recipe. We reached for plate to use as a skillet lid, but after the Pyrex bowl and meatballs incident, we've remembered the sudden temperature change could break the plate.

Has anyone ever cooked with canned clams? Very curious over here, but the fresh stuff seems so much better. The red Brooklyn Clam Sauce recipe from Campagna restaurant calls for canned clams.

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