Thursday, March 29, 2007

Classic Clam Chowder

2 medium russet potatoes (about 1 pound), peeled and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
2 Tbsp. unsalted butter
2/3 cup diced white onions
2/3 cup diced celery
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
4 (6.5-ounce) cans chopped clams, juice and clams reserved separately*
2 (8-ounce) bottles clam juice
1-ounce piece salt pork
1 cup light cream
1/2 tsp. salt

*Or substitute 1 quart fresh shelled clams and juice and only 1 (8-ounce) bottle clam juice

Place potatoes in large stockpot and add water to cover; bring to boil. Reduce heat to simmer; cover and cook 10 minutes until tender (don't over-cook), then drain in a colander and set potatoes aside.

In another large pot, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the celery and onions and sauté until tender, about 4 minutes. Stir in flour. Reduce heat to low and cook 10 minutes until the flour is just golden; remove pot from heat.

In the same pot used for the potatoes, mix the clam juice reserved from the drained clams, the bottled clam juice, and the salt pork. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 1 minute. Gradually whisk the hot clam juice (using a ladle to transfer liquid) into the flour-and-vegetable mixture until smooth. Return this pot of liquid and flour/vegetables to medium-high heat. Add the potatoes, cream, and salt; bring to boil, stirring often. Stir in clams and just heat through, about 1 minute.

Servings: 6


This is probably the best clam chowder recipe I've ever tried. My husband agrees wholeheartedly.

I didn't have any salt pork, so I used a few pieces of diced up bacon. I fried the bacon in the pot before adding the clam juice (draining off the fat, of course). I didn't have light cream on hand, so I used heavy whipping cream. That's probably why this was so darned good!

Adapted from the Chatham Bars Inn in Chatham, Massachusetts (referenced in Oprah's Magazine July 2001)

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