When fresh clams are not available, I use canned clams and bottled clam juice as an alternative. It makes a flavorful and hearty chowder. Make sure you pick the kind that has all-natural ingredients and no preservatives.
- 2 (6.5-ounce) cans chopped clams
- 2 (8-ounce) bottles clam juice
- 3 strips bacon (fine-diced)
- 3 tablespoons oil or butter
- 1 cup fine-diced onion
- 2 cloves garlic (minced)
- 1 cup medium-diced celery
- ¼-½ cup flour
- 1 teaspoon chicken bouillon
- 1 cup water
- ¼ teaspoon dried thyme
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 2 dried bay leaves
- Ground pepper (to taste)
- 2 cups medium-diced potatoes (Red or Yukon Gold)
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 4 dashes Worcestershire sauce
*Find a good brand that does not use artificial preservatives or MSG. I used Bar Harbor.
- In a heavy-bottomed pot, brown the bits of bacon until crisp. Discard rendered fat.
- Over medium heat, add oil or butter and sauté onions until caramelized for about 3 minutes.
- Add garlic and celery in. Sauté for about 2 minutes.
- Add flour. Stir it up and let it cook for about a minute. The amount of flour will depend on how thick you want your chowder.
- Add clam juice (from bottles and strained from cans – about 3 cups total).
- Add chicken bouillon dissolved in a cup of water.
- Add thyme, bay leaves, salt, and ground pepper.
- Let it come to a boil then add potatoes in. Lower the heat, cover, and let it simmer while potatoes cook (soft but firm) for about 15-20 minutes.
- Remove bay leaves.
- Add cream and clams. Cook for just about 2 minutes. Do not overcook.
- Add a few dashes of Worcestershire sauce.
- Taste and adjust seasonings.
- Serve and enjoy!