For the last 2 weeks we have had lots and lots of gloomy weather…gray skies, spatterings of rain, cool winds. We have awakened to rain everyday this week, and today it poured all day long…ALL day long. It is just about 8:00pm and it is still raining. The weathermen are saying that we could get an inch of snow tonight before the system finally departs, but unless the temperature drops fast, that isn’t going to happen.
Since we’ve had such dreary weather, I decided to try a new soup today. I am not a fan of seafood of any kind, but the guys in the house are. The hubs and oldest son requested clam chowder recently, so I did some searching for a good recipe. I found several and had a hard time deciding which one to use since I am not familiar with clam chowder at all. I knew I had to be careful about any additions or substitutions! Anyway, I ended up combining two recipes. It was a hit with the guys. And since I don’t care for clams, I just dished mine up before I added the clams! Served with warm, freshly baked bread, it was just delicious.
Adapted from The American Heritage Cookbook
4 (6.5 oz) cans minced clams
1 c. coarsly chopped celery
3 c. diced potatoes
1 c. coarsly chopped carrots
5 slices bacon, fried semi-crispy
3/4 c. butter
3/4 c. flour
1 quart half-and-half
1 tbsp. salt
1/2 ground black pepper
Fry bacon in large skillet. Set bacon aside and drain fat from the pan. (Keep a thin layer of fat in the pan.) Add the chopped onion, celery and carrots to the pan. Drain the juice from the clams into the veggies. Set clams aside. Bring to a boil and add the potatoes. Cover and let simmer. If necessary, add about 1/2 c. water to make sure potatoes are covered.
While veggies are cooking, melt butter in a large pot. Add the flour and whisk until smooth. Heat the half-and-half in microwave. Add to the flour mixture, whisking continually. Stir in salt and pepper. Bring to a simmer and stir until thick.
Pour vegetables into crockpot; add cream mixture to vegetables and stir to blend well. Chop bacon into bite-sized pieces and add to soup. Cover and let simmer on low for 4-5 hours or until potatoes are tender. Add clams and cook another 30 minutes.