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Wednesday, February 11, 2009

My Manhattan Clam Chowder....yum

*2/20/15: See my updated Manhattan Clam Chowder Redux post (new and updated)!
My Manhattan Clam Chowder |
Soup, soup, soup....I love soup! I've been feeling the need for some clam chowder lately, so I finally got myself together and made some early this afternoon. It was so incredibly satisfying...I was swooning in my kitchen. I mopped it up with a loaf of french bread and washed it down with some red wine...

My Manhattan Clam Chowder
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by Heather Schmitt-Gonzalez
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Keywords: soup/stew bacon clams potatoes tomatoes American

Ingredients (serves 12-15)
  • 1/2 pound bacon, diced
  • 1-2 tablespoons butter
  • 4 shallots, diced
  • 4 stalks celery, diced
  • 3 carrots, diced
  • 8 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 1 teaspoon crushed red chile flakes
  • 8 sprigs fresh thyme (or a scant tablespoon dry)
  • 2 pounds red potatoes, diced
  • 2-3 cups clam juice
  • 4 cups fish stock, seafood stock, or water
  • 2 (14 ounce) cans diced tomatoes w/ juices
  • big handful chopped fresh parsley
  • 3 cans (~18 ounces total) whole or chopped clams (reserve juice)
  • sea salt
  • freshly ground black or white pepper
In a Dutch Oven over low heat, cook bacon until almost done; drain all but a couple Tbs of bacon grease off. Add butter to pot. Turn up to medium & add onions, celery & carrot. Cook ~10 minutes or until soft.
My Manhattan Clam Chowder |
start with bacon...always.
Add garlic, bay leaves, crushed red pepper & thyme. Cook for a couple of minutes. Add potatoes, clam juice & water/stock. Raise heat to high & bring to a boil; Gently boil for ~15-20 minutes or until potatoes are tender.

Add tomatoes w/ their juices. Cook another 10 minutes or so. Turn heat to low & add clams & parsley. Season to taste w/ salt & pepper. Don’t re-boil once clams are added, or they will get tough.
My Manhattan Clam Chowder |
add the veggies
After this, I put on the lid, turn off the heat and let sit for an hour or so to let all the flavors mingle. Discard bay leaves & thyme sprigs. If you need to reheat, do so over low heat until just before simmer.

Serve w/ a loaf of crusty bread & a bottle of wine

To "dice" the bacon, I put a 1 lb. package of bacon in the freezer for ~45 minutes or so, then cut in half crosswise, then slice into small strips. These will break down nicely into a dice.

For the clams, I use 2 (6.5 oz ea.) cans of chopped clams & 1 (5 oz) can of whole baby clams. I like to bit into some bigger chunks sometimes. Feel free to use a combo or just one kind; again, personal preference.

My Manhattan Clam Chowder |

Serve w/ a loaf of crusty bread & a bottle of wine.

I usually roast a head of garlic, too. Mop up yummy soup w/ bread…. All these ingredients can be tweaked to your own liking…don’t have to be exact, just use them as a guideline.

 The crushed red pepper adds a little heat…nice against the juicy pop of the clam in your mouth….enjoy This makes a really big batch of soup. I’m sure it will half fine if you don’t need so much.