Spaghetti with Clam Sauce

James Beard

Author and Educator

Among his significant contributions to our culinary landscape, our namesake hosted the first-ever American food program, I Love to Eat, on the fledgling medium of television in 1946. A frequent guest star on his show: pasta. “If I could afford the calories, I’m sure I could eat pasta three times a day,” he wrote in James Beard’s Simple Foods. “It is to me one of the shorter routes to heaven.” We couldn’t agree more.


  • 2 quarts littleneck clams
  • White wine
  • 4 to 5 large cloves garlic, minced or crushed
  • 1 pound spaghetti
  • ¾ cup chopped parsley


Scrub the clams well and wash them in cold water to remove the sand from the shells. Put them in a heavy saucepan with ½ inch of white wine and the garlic. Cover the pan tightly and steam the clams until the shells open, 5 to 10 minutes.

Bring a large pot of salted water to boil. Cook the spaghetti according to package directions, then drain. Put the freshly cooked spaghetti in a warm bowl. Pour the clams, still in their shells, and broth over it and sprinkle parsley on the top.


4 to 6 servings