Clam chowder is a flavorful soup that is a great starting course or a whole meal in itself. You can make make a pot of this wonderful seafood dish at in the comfort of your own home and have enough to use for several meals.
You Will Need
* 5 lb. hard-shelled clams
* 4 oz. salt pork or pancetta
* 1 yellow onion
* 1 celery stalk
* 3 potatoes
* 1 c. milk
* 1 bay leaf
* 2 sprigs fresh thyme
* 1 c. heavy cream
* Oyster crackers
* A large soup pot
* A measuring cup
* A paring knife
* 2 tbsp. flour
Step 1: Chop the clams
Discard any clams that did not open. Let the clams cool; then cut the meat out with a paring knife and chop coarsely. Wash the soup pot.
Step 2: Cook the salt pork or pancetta
Dice the salt pork or pancetta and add to the soup pot. Cook until crisp.
Step 3: Add the onion and celery
Dice the onion and celery and add to the salt pork or pancetta. Cook until soft.
For a quicker recipe, substitute two cups freshly shucked clams or three cans minced clams, plus one bottle clam juice.
Step 4: Add the potatoes
Stir in the reserved clam broth or bottled clam juice, plus the milk. Peel the potatoes and cut into cubes. Add them to the pot with the bay leaf and thyme and simmer until tender.
Step 5: Steam the clams
Wash the clams thoroughly under cold running water and add them to three cups boiling water in a large soup pot. Boil for three to five minutes.
Mix two tablespoons flour with two tablespoons cold water; and cook and stir for one minute for thicker chowder.
Step 6: Finish and serve
Add the cream and the clam meat. Simmer and season with salt and pepper. Sprinkle with parsley and serve with oyster crackers. You'll be saying "chowdah" before you know it.
Step 7: Save the clam broth
Remove the steamed clams and set aside. Pour off two cups of the steaming water into a measuring cup.