Linguine with Clams and Fennel


  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
  • 3 leeks, white and light green parts only, thinly sliced crosswise (3 cups)
  • 3/4 pound linguine
  • 1/2 medium fennel bulb, cored and thinly sliced (1/2 cup)
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 4 pounds Manila clams, scrubbed
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 1 cup fish stock or low-sodium chicken broth
  • 4 teaspoons neonata (see Note), sambal oelek or other chunky chile paste
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons chopped parsley
  • Kosher salt
  • Pepper
  • Torn basil leaves, for garnish


  1. In a pot, heat 2 tablespoons of the oil. Add the leeks and cook over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until tender and lightly golden, about 8 minutes. Transfer to a bowl.
  2. In a large saucepan of salted boiling water, cook the linguine until just al dente; drain.
  3. Meanwhile, in the pot, heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil. Add the fennel and garlic and cook over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until the fennel is softened, about 3 minutes. Add the clams, white wine and stock and bring to a simmer. Cover and cook until the clams open, 3 to 5 minutes; transfer the clams to a large bowl as they open. Remove the pot from the heat; discard any clams that don’t open. Reserve 12 whole clams in their shells; shell the remaining clams.
  4. Bring the juices in the pot to a boil and stir in the linguine, neonata, clams and leeks. Add the remaining 1/4 cup of olive oil and toss until the pasta is coated and the juices are thickened. Stir in the lemon juice and half of the parsley; season with salt and pepper. Serve the pasta in shallow bowls garnished with basil, the remaining parsley and a drizzle of olive oil.


Neonata is an Italian condiment made from salted fish and chiles. It's available at Italian markets and from Amazon.