3 tablespoons dry breadcrumbs, preferably Italian-style
2 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil, divided
1 cup finely chopped yellow onion
1 1/2cups medium chopped fresh fennel
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 / 2cup dry white wine
1 1/2 cups cherry tomatoes
3 dozen littleneck clams, scrubbed well
3 cups cooked pearl barley
1/3 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
In a small saucepan over medium heat, combine the breadcrumbs and 1 teaspoon of the oil. Cook, stirring constantly, until golden brown, about 2 to 3 minutes. Set aside to cool.
Meanwhile, in a large saucepan or Dutch oven over medium, heat the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil. Add the onion and fennel, reduce the heat to medium-low and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and red pepper flakes and cook, stirring, for 1 minute.
Add the wine, tomatoes and clams, cover tightly and increase heat to high. Cook for 5 to 7 minutes, checking now and again and transferring the clams as they open to a bowl. Discard any clams that don’t open.
Add the barley to the clam liquid left in the saucepan and heat over medium, stirring, for 3 minutes. Return the clams to the pan and cook, stirring, until they are heated through. Ladle the mixture into 4 pasta or soup bowls and top each portion with a quarter of the sauteed breadcrumbs and parsley. Makes 4 servings.
Per serving: 400 calories; 90 calories from fat (23 percent of total calories); 10 g fat (1.5 g saturated; 0 g trans fats); 45 mg cholesterol; 50 g carbohydrate; 7 g fiber; 4 g sugar; 22 g protein; 240 mg sodium.