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Ragout of Clams with Spinach, Sausage and Orzo
© Madeleine Hill

Ragout of Clams with Spinach, Sausage and Orzo

  • TOTAL TIME: 1 HR
  • SERVINGS: 4 to 6

This one-dish meal has it all: rich Italian sausage (meat), briny clams (seafood), leafy greens (vegetable) and rice-like pasta (starch) to soak up the delicious juices.

Slideshow: Clam Recipes

  1. 1 1/2 pounds fresh curly spinach, thick stems discarded
  2. 1 cup orzo
  3. 1 pound sweet Italian sausage, casings removed
  4. 2 thyme sprigs
  5. 5 medium shallots, finely chopped (1 cup)
  6. 1 1/2 cups dry white wine
  7. 1 cup chicken stock or low-sodium broth
  8. 3 pounds littleneck or other small hard-shell clams, scrubbed
  9. 4 tablespoons salted butter, sliced
  10. Juice of 1/2 lemon
  11. 3 tablespoons chopped parsley
  1. In a large pot of boiling water, blanch the spinach, stirring occasionally, until wilted, about 2 minutes. Drain and let cool, then squeeze dry. Coarsely chop the spinach.
  2. In a medium pot of boiling salted water, cook the orzo until al dente. Drain and transfer to a large shallow serving bowl.
  3. Heat a large enameled cast-iron casserole over high heat until hot. Add the sausage and thyme and cook, breaking up the sausage, until the meat is golden, about 6 minutes. Add the shallots and cook, stirring, until golden, about 4 minutes. Add the wine and boil until reduced by half. Add the stock and bring to a boil. Add the clams, cover and cook until wide open, 6 to 8 minutes. Transfer the clams as they are done to the serving bowl with the orzo. Discard the thyme sprigs.
  4. Boil the broth in the casserole until reduced to 1/2 cup. Remove from the heat and stir in the spinach, butter and lemon juice. Pour the sauce over the clams and toss well. Sprinkle the parsley over the ragout and serve.
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