Recipe adapted from My Best Clam Chowder by
3-6.5 ounce cans chopped clams
1 cup minced onion
1 cup diced celery
6 strips bacon
2 cups cubed potatoes
3 small bottles clam juice
1/2 cup butter
3/4 cup flour
1 quart half & half
2 Tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
ground black pepper, to taste
1. Cook bacon until crispy. Remove from grease and allow to drain on paper towels.
2. Place onions, potatoes, and celery in bacon fat.
3. Add enough clam juice to cover veggies (I used 3 bottles, but add more if necessary). Cook on medium-high heat until veggies are tender, about 15 minutes.
4. In a large, deep skillet melt butter over a medium heat and add flour. Stir constantly so that it does not stick or burn, for about 5 minutes. It will eventually turn a light brown. This roux will form the base for your chowder. Slowly whisk in the half & half, breaking up the clumps of flour and butter. Continue to whisk until it is smooth and thick. Add the clam juice-vegetable mixture and cook until heated, being careful not to boil the chowder. Add clams a few minutes before serving. If the clams cook too long, they will become tough, so just add them at the end. Stir in vinegar, and season with salt and pepper.
Serve with clam cakes, or a crusty baguette, and a nice green salad. I made this chowdah, as my husband Mark’s New England family would say, in honor of our favorite baseball team, the Boston Red Sox. Opening Day is almost here…Go Sox! Enjoy!