I thought the song was Manic Monday?
Well, today’s Tuesday and boy was it manic.
Why is it that the day after a long weekend is always crazy? Shouldn’t everyone be coming back into the office nice and calm and relaxed?
Well, that’s unfortunately never the case.
So after a long weekend of lazily preparing meals and relaxing with wine, I’m coming home from a busy day, ravenous and in need of an easy dinner.
This is also what comes to mind when I’m in need of comfort food.
Comfort food is different for everyone. It totally depends on what you grew up eating and what will transport you back to mom or grandma’s house. For you it may be meatloaf or mac and cheese or spanikopita.
For me, it’s a big bowl of pasta. Comforting, warm and easy.
This dinner is so easy, I even have the time to make a quick appetizer.
Linguine in clam sauce.
The real world way.
Yes, if I had the time, I’d prefer to use fresh clams. But I don’t have the time to stop at the store, nor do I have the patience right now to cook clams.
I didn’t get to eat lunch today, and I know that if my day were that hectic, then my boyfriend’s was probably at least three times worse. And he’s probably hungry. And he gets cranky, and a little angry when he’s hungry.
Like his dad says, an angry man is a hungry man.
Hangry. That’s what men are when they’re hungry and angry from the hunger.
You don’t want a hangry boyfriend on your hands after a long day.
Get this recipe started by bringing a pot of water to a boil. While the water starts to bubble, make the sauce.
This sauce is a great friend of the itty bitty city kitchen because 1. it’s made entirely of pantry staples and 2. it doesn’t take a lot of assembly – chopping garlic then the rest happens in the frying pan.
- 1 can minced clams, drained of juices (this is the real world way to make the sauce, replace with fresh clams if you have time)
- 2-3 cloves of garlic, chopped
- olive oil
- white wine
- black pepper
This is the easiest sauce you will ever make.
Drizzle a pan with olive oil and add the chopped garlic; turn to medium heat and let the garlic start to brown.
Add the drained clams, pour in the white wine and cook until the alcohol is gone. Or cook just a little and leave some of the alcohol if you had that kind of day.
Add a few grinds of black pepper and let the sauce hang out on the stove over a low flame. Odds are, the sauce is done and the water hasn’t boiled yet.
Which gives you the perfect amount of time to make an appetizer. Also known as something to hand to the hangry man at the door to quell the hanger.
Bruschetta is one of those highly versatile and highly underrated foods.
There’s nothing better than crispy bread in my book. Crispy bread topped with some fresh and yummy accouterments (you like that word, don’t you?) is even better.
For a really quick bruschetta, slice a baguette and toast the slices at 400 for a few minutes. If you don’t have time to preheat the oven (or forgot like me) throw the slices on a foil-lined cookie sheet and pop under the broiler for a few minutes. Just watch the bread because it can burn quickly.
Peel a garlic clove and slice in half.
When the bread is toasted, pull from the oven and rub with a garlic clove half. The heat from the bread will melt the garlic, and the crusty texture will provide an abrasive surface that will rub the garlic flavor off onto the bread.
You can sprinkle with some olive oil and parmesan cheese and pop it back in the oven for a minute and, ta-da, garlic bread.
You can also take it a step further and chop up some tomatoes, toss them in a bowl with some olive oil, salt and pepper, and set on the table with the garlic bread for a make your own tomato bruschetta station.
This should keep your hangry man occupied while you cook the linguine.
Linguine takes like four minutes to cook, so it’s the best option here.
A side salad with a simple dressing, tomatoey, garlicky bruschetta and a steaming bowl of linguine topped with the winey, oceany, peppery clam sauce. A sprinkle of parmesan cheese.
Dinner on the table in under ten minutes.
And there’s nothing more satisfying or comforting than a steaming bowl of pasta.
Hangry man be gone.