Zingy and meaty, this Clam and Andouille Sausage Pasta is a robust dish that’s light enough for spring and hearty enough for dinner.
This is a shoulder season here in Maine. Some days, the warmth feels thick like swimming through a reedy marsh. Other days, the cool breeze wafts inside, rustling the curtains and keeping the house at just the right temperature. And sometimes, it’s so cold that I have to turn the heat on to bring the temperature up a bit in the house.
This is when we plant. Some plants, like greens and radishes, like the cold. Greens like kale and lettuce and root crops like radishes can be planted before the last frost. Others, like tomatoes, have to wait until the threat of frost passes. At this point in the season, most of our garden is planted. And now, we wait.
Meanwhile, the farmers market is coming alive. Baby kale and arugula, rhubarb, radishes … these are the things that await. As we navigate the hot, warm, cool and rainy days, we get to feast on all that.
At this time of year, our home menus are as varied as the days.
When planning our meals, I both consult my weather app and what’s available at the farmers market. If Monday and Tuesday will be sunny and warm, I plan to cook outside — grilled chicken or kabobs with a nice salad, for instance. But if the temperature is dropping as rain sets in later in the week, I turn to heartier meals cooked in the house.
Clam and Andouille Sausage Pasta is perfect for the cooler days of spring — the ones where it’s warm, but the breeze is still cool. This recipe creates a pasta that’s warm and savory but still light. And it een uses some of that lovely spring produce. Delightful.
In this recipe, your favorite pasta is coated in a buttery garlic wine sauce with bits of zesty sliced andouille sauce, meaty clam bits, earthy kale and sweet onions. It’s vibrant and robust, layered with flavors and textures.
Perhaps my favorite part of this dish is how easy it is to make. The sauce comes together swiftly, finishing up as the pasta cooks. And then it’s tossed together (how easy!) and seasoned with salt and pepper. And just like that, you’re ready to eat.
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 small onion, small diced
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/2 cup white wine
- 1 can chopped clams (include the juice)
- 2 links andouille sausage, sliced
- 1 cup baby kale
- 1 lb pasta such as fettuccini or papparadelle
- salt and pepper, to taste
- Place a pot of water on a burner on high heat.
- Melt butter in a large skillet. Add onions and cook, stirring occasionally, for 5-7 minutes until softened and beginning to brown. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute, or until fragrant. This will happen quickly.
- Add the wine and clams with their juices to the skillet. Cook 2 minutes (it should be boiling) and then add the andouille and kale to the skillet. Cover, reduce the heat to low and simmer.
- Add the pasta to the boiling water. Cook, per package directions, to al dente. Drain and return to the pot.
- Pour the andouille clam mixture over the pasta and stir vigorously to combine. Season with salt and pepper, as desired.