Spaghetti alle Vongole

Spaghetti alle Vongole (spah-gett-ee al-fohn-goh-lay) is a delicious pasta dish from the Naples area. If clams are un- obtainable, cockles or mussels may be substituted.3 tablespoons olive oil

2 garlic cloves, crushed

1 tablespoon capers, finely chopped

1 small onion, finely chopped

1 lb. canned peeled tomatoes, drained

½ teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon white pepper

½ teaspoon dried basil

1 lb. canned clams, drained and chopped

1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley

1 lb. spaghetti, cooked, drained and kept hot

1 lemon, quartered

In a medium-sized saucepan, heat the oil over moderate heat. When the oil is hot, add the garlic, capers and onion and fry, stirring occasionally, for 5 to 7 minutes or until the onion is soft and translucent but not brown.

Stir in the tomatoes, salt, pepper and basil and bring the mixture to the boil, stirring constantly. Reduce the heat to low, cover the pan and simmer, stirring occasionally, for a further 30 minutes. Add the clams and the parsley and cook for a further 5 minutes or until the clams are heated through. Remove the pan from the heat.

Place the spaghetti in a large, deep serving dish and pour over the sauce. Using two large spoons, toss quickly until the spaghetti is thoroughly coated with the sauce. Garnish with the lemon quarters and serve immediately.

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