When I was a young mother and first moved into our new home, my husband and I were invited to dinner by our neighbor, Angela.
Angela was a triple threat. She was an excellent cook, an exercise instructor (i.e., perfect figure), and a beautiful, kind woman.
So, I was pretty nervous about going to her house for dinner. It turns out that I had every right to be intimidated by her accomplishments. When we entered Angela’s home, we were met by the most enticing aroma. Our stomaches were soon rumbling with the message “feed me”. When we sat down to eat, Angela presented the source of that enticing aroma. She had prepared sea food pasta in a clay pot. I never heard of this cooking method, but I was determined to find out about it. After much research, I discovered that this was an old Eutruscan method of preparing food.
Now I am sure your understood my feelings of inadequacy. Who, I would ask you, in their 30’s prepares a meal in an ancient Eustruscan vessel????
But true to her nature, Angela generously share this recipe. Although you have to buy a unique cooking pot, it is worth the investment. This pasta dish became the main course at our home on Christmas Eve when we celebrated the Feast of the Seven Fishes. Or, as my son David named it, The Feast of the Seven Crustaceans.
Angela’s Clay Pot Pasta
- 6 tablespoons of olive oil
- 1 cup of chopped green pepper
- 2 tablespoons of parsley
- 1 tablespoon of garlic paste
- 4 cups of chopped tomatoes
- 1 teaspoon of chopped basil leaves
- 1 teaspoon of dried oregano
- a pinch of chili peppers
- 1 lb of clam meat
- 1lb of shrimp, peeled and deveined
- 1/4 cup of brandy
- 3 tablespoons of butter melted
- 1 lb of penne pasta
- Sauté the pepper, parsley, garlic, basil, oregano and chili flakes in the olive oil
- Add the tomatoes and simmer for 20 minutes
- Blanche the pasta (half the cooking time)
- Combine the pasta, clam meat, shrimp, and red sauce
- Put into the clay pot
- Pour the brandy and melted butter over top
- Cook at 450 degrees for approximately 1 and 1/2 hours
Special Note: The recipe above is the one that Angela gave to me. In the picture above you can see that I added some sautéed zucchini at the end. If using a clay pot be sure to follow the manufacturer’s directions prior to use. If you don’t want to invest in a clay pot, this can be made in a cocotte pan or cast iron pan.
I hope you enjoy Angela’s recipe as much as I have enjoyed sharing it with you.
Talk soon, ❤️💕 Bernadette