Linguine with Clams in Pepper Broth

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Ingredients

Coarse salt

1/2 pound dried linguine

2 ounces pancetta, cut into 1/2-inch cubes (1/2 cup)

1 1/2 ounces (3 tablespoons) unsalted butter

2 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley, plus 1 tablespoon chopped, for garnish

5 garlic cloves, minced

Freshly ground pepper

1/4 teaspoon crushed red-pepper flakes

1 cup dry white wine

2 pounds Manila clams or cockles, scrubbed well

1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest

Instructions

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add pasta, and cook until al dente. Drain, reserving 1 cup cooking water.

Meanwhile, cook pancetta in a large saucepan over medium-low heat until crisp, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a paper-towel-lined plate using a slotted spoon, and let drain.

Return saucepan to medium-low heat, and add 2 tablespoons butter, the parsley, garlic, 2 teaspoons pepper, and the red-pepper flakes. Cook until garlic is soft and lightly golden, about 5 minutes. Add wine and clams, and bring to a simmer. Cover, and cook until clams have opened, about 5 minutes (discard any unopened clams). Add linguine, reserved cooking water, pancetta, remaining tablespoon butter, and the lemon zest. Toss to combine. Season with pepper, and garnish with parsley.

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