Monday, May 2, 2011

Dub's Piquant Northwestern Clam and Bacon Chowder

I've decided to inject another element into the blog. One of my favorite subjects; one which I am very passionate about.  Food.   This is my own recipe, and it came out DAMN GOOD.  This medley of flavors is simply phenomenal; and it only takes about an hour to cook. 

6 lbs. of fresh clams (or as many as you want.)
Water, as needed
8 slices thick cut pepper bacon, diced
2 Walla Walla sweet onions, chopped
3 cloves garlic; pressed, or 3 tsp minced garlic
2 stalks celery, diced
2 carrots, peeled and diced.
1 1/2 cups water
4 large Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and cubed
Salt and McCormick's Worcestershire black pepper, to taste
1 cup quality Sauvignon Blanc
2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
2 tsp hot sauce of choice (such as Tabasco)
1 tbsp thyme
1 tsp dill
1 tbsp cornstarch
1 quart half and half
1 stick of butter
4 tbsp malt vinegar
2 tbsp parsley
  • Steam clams in about 2 inches of water, just until clams open. Reserve clam juice; mince clams, and set aside.
  • Add enough water, along with the clam juice, to make approx. 1 quart of liquid. Set aside.
  • In stock pot, cook diced bacon over medium-high heat until almost crisp.
  • Add onions, garlic, celery, and carrots; saute for 5 minutes.
  • Stir in 1 1/2 cups water, and potatoes; season with salt and Worcestershire pepper. Bring to a boil, and cook uncovered until potatoes are tender. Note: You may be tempted to add more water here, but do not.  It's going to look thick, but it's supposed to be.  There will be plenty more liquid to add later.
  • Add reserved clam liquid, white wine, Worcestershire, hot sauce, thyme, and dill. Return to a boil. Reduce heat to medium, and simmer about 10 minutes.
  • Dissolve cornstarch into the half and half, and stir the mixture into the soup. Add the butter, and stir.
  • Add clams, stir occasionally, and cook until it just starts to bubble; but do not allow to boil.
  • Reduce heat to low, and cook for 3 minutes, or until lightly thickened.
  • Add the vinegar and parsley, and stir in.
  • Get your damn grub on.

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