Over a Cup of Coffee: Clam Chowder | CraigDailyPress.com

Over a Cup of Coffee: Clam Chowder

Diane Prather

I haven't had the time to try the fruit cake bars or fruit cookies yet. I'm so thankful for the snow (I keep thinking about more green grass this year), but it surely has made for more chores. However, I did take some time to make clam chowder a couple of nights ago, and it was delicious.

Last year I asked readers if they had a clam chowder recipe and most said they used an oyster stew recipe, substituting clams for the oysters. So that's what I did.

These are the ingredients I used: two 7 ½ ounce cans of minced clams, 3 slices of bacon (cut up), 2 medium potatoes (peeled and diced), 1 large onion (chopped), ¾ cup chicken broth, ¼ teaspoon black pepper, 1/8 teaspoon salt, 1 cup whipping cream, and ¾ cup milk.

I looked at some oyster stew recipes in cookbooks. Some of the recipes called for ½ teaspoon dried thyme and a clove of minced garlic, but I didn't use these two ingredients in my chowder.

To make the "Clam Chowder", first cut the bacon into small pieces and fry it until crisp. I fried it in the pot I was using for the chowder. When it's ready, remove the bacon with a slotted spoon and drain on a paper towel. Leave any drippings in the pot. (I didn't have much left from the bacon I used.)

Peel and dice the potatoes and chop the onion. Then put the potatoes, onion, chicken broth, pepper, and salt into the soup pot. (I had a little canned chicken broth left so instead of wasting it, I just put it in the pot, too. You can also make your own broth from chicken bouillon cubes.) Bring the mixture to a boil, reduce the heat, cover the pot, and simmer until the potatoes are tender but not mushy. It will take about 20 minutes.

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When the potatoes are ready, open the cans of clams and drain them. Add enough water to the clam liquid, if necessary, to make one cup. Stir the cream and milk into the potatoes and bring to just boiling. Then add the clams and the clam liquid. Heat through and serve.

You can use fresh clams if you wish. Fresh shucked clams will need to be cooked for about 2 to 3 minutes before adding them to the chowder.

This recipe makes about 4 to 5 servings. The next time I'll double the recipe so that we have leftover chowder for the next day.

With all this snow and cold, it's a great time to make soup. Do you have a soup recipe that you'd like to share? Call me at 824-8809 or write to me at Box 415, Craig 81626.

Copyright Diane Prather, 2012

Clam Chowder

Two 7 ½-ounce cans minced clams

3 slices bacon, cut up

1 large onion, chopped

2 medium potatoes, peeled and diced

¾ cup chicken broth

1 cup whipping cream

¾ cup milk

¼ teaspoon black pepper

1/8 teaspoon salt

Cook the bacon in the soup pot until crisp. When ready, remove to a paper towel, using a slotted spoon. Leave drippings in the soup pot. To the pot, add the onion, potatoes, chicken broth, pepper, and salt. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat, cover the pot, and let simmer for about 20 minutes, until the potatoes are tender (not mushy). Open the cans of clams and drain off the liquid. Save the liquid and add water, if necessary, to make one cup. When the potatoes are ready, stir in the cream and milk. Bring to a boil. Then add the clams, liquid, and bacon. Stir and cook until heated through. Makes 4 to 5 servings.