SPAGHETTI WITH BABY CLAMS AND ARUGULA PESTO
For the pesto
2 ounces (2 cups packed) arugula, coarsely chopped
1 small clove garlic, crushed
3 tablespoons shredded Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
2 tablespoons canola oil
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
For the pasta
3 tablespoons kosher salt, for the cooking water
1 pound dried spaghetti or linguine
1/2 cup dry white wine, such as sauvignon blanc
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
20 ounces canned baby clams, such as Roland brand (not drained)
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
For the pesto:
Combine the arugula and garlic in a mini food processor or blender; pulse until the greens are finely chopped. Add the cheese, the canola and extra-virgin olive oils, and the salt and pepper; process until smooth. The yield is 1/2 cup.
Bring a large pot of water to a boil over medium-high heat. Add the salt, then the pasta, and cook according to the package directions.
While the pasta is cooking, heat the wine in a large, nonreactive saute pan over medium-high heat; cook until most of its alcohol burns off, about 2 minutes. (You’ll be able to tell when you sweep your hand over the pan, toward you, and can’t smell the wine.) Add the lemon juice, the clams and their can juices, the extra-virgin olive oil and the crushed red pepper flakes.
Transfer 1/2 cup of the pasta cooking water to the saute pan. Reduce the heat under the saute pan to medium; cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from the heat.
Drain the pasta well, then add to the saute pan along with 1/4 cup of the pesto (reserve the rest for another use). Return the pan to medium heat for 1 minute, tossing to coat the pasta completely and warm through.
Divide among individual wide, shallow bowls. Serve right away.