Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Happy Birthday Honey

Yesterday was James' birthday.
This year our celebration happened to coincide with our latest effort to eat healthier and, for me, to really lose some weight. So our nearly traditional meal of spaghetti and clam sauce (one of James' favorites) seemed out of step. Now as a lifelong dieter I know pasta sauce -- in a pinch -- can be liberally poured on hearty vegetables like broccoli (another of James' favorites) with good results. So I gave it a try for his birthday dinner.
Usually my clam sauce is pretty rich with butter and olive oil and sometimes crispy pancetta too. Tonight I started with just 1TB of olive oil and sautéed lots of garlic and red pepper flakes for about 2 minutes.Then I added in the clams (I used nearly 5 lbs of little necks), 3/4 cup white wine, and the juice of 1 lemon. The covered pan cooked for about 7 minutes until all the calms were opened but still tender. Then, as if I was finishing with pasta I added in 1 TB of butter (not 3) and plenty of chopped parsley and gave everything a good stir over medium high heat.
I poured the clams and sauce over waiting steamed broccoli and we had a new diet friendly dinner dish around here.
Did we miss the extra butter? No. Was it flavorful and satisfying? Yes. Was it the same as my usual restaurant rich dish? Well no, but it's a new dish all it's own. One we might feel better about eating more often.

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