Tag along when jewelry designer and Italy lover Fanny Castro recreates her favorite Pasta Vongole from a small beach club in Moneglia, Liguria, called Bagni La Secca. Yes, she will share the secret recipe with us below. Buon appetito!
My favorite Italian dish is Pasta Vongole, especially the Pasta Vongole from a tiny little beach club in Moneglia called Bagni La Secca, which I have tried to recreate. For me, pasta Vongole embodies the perfect combination of simplicity and exquisite flavors; every taste together creates a compelling experience for the taste buds.
So of course, I chose Moneglia as the perfect place to recreate the Pasta Vongole for my boyfriend. Moneglia, for me, is the perfect little village, it’s a small charming coastal town nestled in the picturesque region of Liguria, and it holds a very special place in my heart. This is where my family always meets up for a vacation or to celebrate different holidays and where we have had our second home since the late 90s. Moneglias breathtaking views of the Ligurian Sea, rugged cliffs, and colorful houses transports me to tranquility and natural beauty.
If you want more or less of something, go for that, everything is about the right taste and feeling.
340 grams of linguine or spaghetti
900 grams of fresh clams, preferably vongole veraci (scrubbed and rinsed)
Olive oil, and don’t be shy here
Garlic 3-4 cloves, more if you love garlic (minced)
Peperoncino flakes, I love mine spicy, but you do you
1 dl dry white wine
1 dl chopped cherry tomatoes
¼ dl of pine nuts
Freshly ground black pepper
Lemon wedges for the serving
1. Boil the pasta until al dente. Save some of the pasta water for later.
2. While the pasta is cooking, heat olive oil in a large skillet. Add the garlic, pepperoncini flakes, and sauté until fragrant. And do NOT burn the garlic.
3. Add the clams to the skillet, then pour in the white wine. Cover the skillet and let the clams cook for about 5-7 minutes or until they open up. Throw away the clams that don’t open up.
4. When the clams are open, remove them from the skillet and set aside.
5. Heat some more olive oil in the same skillet, add the tomatoes and pine nuts, and sauté for 3-4 minutes, until the tomatoes soften and the pine nuts are lightly toasted.
6. Add the cooked pasta to the skillet with the tomatoes and the pine nuts, along with the pasta water you saved; start with a small amount of water and add more if needed. Toss well to cover the pasta with the sauce. Cook for an additional one or two minutes to allow the flavors to blend.
7. Drizzle some olive oil over the pasta, add the chopped parsley, and season with salt and black pepper. Toss everything together until well combined. Add the clams.
8. Ready to eat. Garnish it with a sprinkle of fresh parsley and a lemon wedge on the side.
Images by Fanny Castro