Monday, November 9, 2009

Clam Chowder

McKayla's favorite soup is clam chowder. She loves it with good sourdough bread. If she sees it on a menu, she orders it. She is very loyal.

I love clam chowder as well, but I have had the best so nothing else can compare. Gladstones of Malibu is pure cream and clams. Maybe a little salt and pepper. Perhaps some butter. It is the richest, most celestial clam and cream concoction created. Notice when I start salivating that the alliteration begins?

I love the traditional chowder with all the veggies in it as well. Which is what this is. But don't begrudge me my little reminiscence. Enjoy it with some sourdough bread.

3 (6.5 ounce) cans minced clams

1 cup minced onion

1 cup diced celery

2 cups cubed potatoes

1 cup diced carrots

3/4 cup butter

3/4 cup all-purpose flour

1 quart half-and-half cream

2 tablespoons lemon juice

1 1/2 teaspoons salt

ground black pepper to taste

a drop or two of Tabasco, according to your taste.

Saute the onions, celery, potatoes and carrots with 1 Tbsp of the butter over medium heat until just soft. Add water to cover, and cook over medium heat until tender.

Meanwhile, in a large, heavy saucepan, melt the rest of the butter over medium heat. Whisk in flour until smooth. Whisk in cream and stir constantly until thick and smooth. Stir in vegetables and clams* with their juice. Heat through, but do not boil. When clams are heated through, stir in lemon juice, and season with salt and pepper and Tabasco. Serve immediately.

*Stir in clams just before serving. If they cook too much they get tough.

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