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2000s Recipes + Menus

Linguine with Grilled Clams and Bacon

Serves4 (main course)
  • Active time:25 min
  • Start to finish:45 min
June 2009
Clams are excellent on the grill. The tinge of smokiness perfectly complements their briny flavor, and, conveniently enough, they pop open when they are done cooking. Combined with crisp bacon, they’re the foundation of a very easy yet very flavorful pasta sauce.

View more of our favorite recipes from this issue.
  • 1/2 lb sliced bacon, chopped
  • 6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons minced garlic
  • 2 teaspoons hot red-pepper flakes
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 32 small (less than 2 inches wide) hard-shelled clams, scrubbed
  • 3/4 lb linguine
  • 1/2 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley
  • Equipment:

    a 13- by 9- by 2-inch disposable foil pan
  • Prepare grill for direct-heat cooking over hot charcoal (high heat for gas), leaving about one third of grill free of coals (or, for a gas grill, shutting off one or two burners); see “Grilling Procedure.”
  • Cook bacon in a 12-inch heavy skillet over medium heat until crisp. Transfer with a slotted spoon to paper towels to drain.
  • Stir together oil, garlic, red-pepper flakes, and lemon juice in foil pan and put on grill over area with no coals.
  • Grill clams on grill rack over coals, turning with tongs, until they open, 3 to 7 minutes, transferring as opened to foil pan and being careful not to spill their juices. (Discard any clams that remain unopened after 7 minutes.)
  • Cook linguine in a pasta pot of well-salted boiling water until al dente, then drain.
  • Toss pasta with bacon, parsley, contents of foil pan, and salt and pepper to taste.
Cooks’ note:
    Clams can be cooked on the stove with 2 Tbsp water in same skillet used to cook bacon; bring to a boil, covered, then cook, covered, stirring occasionally, until clams just open wide, 6 to 10 minutes (discard any clams that remain unopened after 10 minutes).