Saturday, January 28, 2012

Clam Chowder

To continue with my last post Steak House Chili. It's Clam Chowder time. When I think of Clam Chowder I can only imagine New England Clam Chowder. The stick to your bones thick chowder of my childhood. I know there are some die hard Manhattan Clam Chowder people, but to that I say "That ain't Chowder!" It's more like Manhattan Clam Soup- which is fine and dandy.
 Alright now down to my chowder, it has to have nice chunks of potatoes, carrots, onions, celery, clams and bacon. - Yes Bacon! My recipe calls for canned clams- Sorry to disappoint, but clams here are rather expensive, and since the heaviest part of a clam is the shell. I can't afford to be buying 8 pounds of clams just for 3 1/2 pounds of meat. 

Clam Chowder:
4 Slices Bacon
1 Yellow Onion- diced
3 Stalks Celery - diced
3 Carrots- peeled & diced
3 Medium Potatoes- peeled & diced
2 Cups Stock- Fish, Chicken, or Veggie
48 oz of canned clams drained from juice - SAVE THE JUICE!!
4 oz salted butter
1/4 cup flour
2 cups whole milk
1 TBS Dill Weed
1 TBS Red Pepper Flakes
1 TBS Black Pepper
Salt to taste. 

In a large stock pot cook the bacon slices till crispy, take them out and set aside. Add the onion, celery, carrots and potatoes, saute in the bacon fat till the onion is translucent. Add the stock, and reserved clam juice. Bring to a boil, then turn the heat down, cover and simmer for 20 min.  In a separate  pan melt the butter, once the butter is melted add the flour. Whisk for 1 min, then  slowly add the milk. Once the milk is Incorporated , let simmer till it is thickened.  Add to the big pot of veggies. Chop up the bacon. Add bacon, clams and spices. Keep on low for 10- 15 stirring so it doesn't burn, or stick to the pan. Serve with nsourdough bread. 

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