Even though my chowder turned out to be much more like a soup than an actual chowder...the flavors were fantastic! If it had just been a touch bit thicker, it would have been some of the best clam chowder I have had! Alas, the fault only lays on myself, and I'm ok with that, it was still so incredibly good. The idea for this recipe was inspired by Mary at One Perfect Bite, Georgia at Comfort of Cooking, and Des at Life's Ambrosia.
Clam Chowder has been one of my favorite forms of comfort food for most of my life. I loved the creamy, thickness of it. I loved that when you ordered it you got oyster crackers along side it. (I love oyster crackers...I used to melt butter in a small bowl and let the oyster crackers float in the butter before eating them! LOL) I love that sometimes it comes in a bread bowl. I just love clam chowder.....New England clam chowder to be more precise, I'm not that found of the red Manhattan clam chowder. I think the first place I fell in love with it would have been a restaurant in Nebraska called Grandmother's. The place closed and has reopened, but it's not that same. The old Grandmother's was a place we would go to on special occasions. I remember the place fondly because my mom would always get the french onion soup and I would just gag as I watched her eat it.. ugh!! I thought it was awful looking (Sorry Mom)...but I had my chowder, so I was ok!!
Anyway, this is a great recipe and is easy to throw together on a cold winter night!
New England Clam Chowder
4 slices of bacon, diced
1/2 sweet onion, diced
1 carrot, peeled and diced
1 large garlic clove, minced
3 Tablespoons all purpose flour
2 cans chopped claims, juices reserved
8 oz clam juice
1/2 cup water
1 large russet potato, peeled and diced
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 teaspoon dried thyme
salt and pepper
In a large pot or dutch oven, over medium heat, add the bacon and cook until brown and crispy; about 5 minutes. Remove bacon and drain on paper plate lined with a paper towel. Add the onion and carrot and cook until tender and onion is translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute. Whisk in the flour and cook 1 minutes. Slowly whisk in reserved clam juice, clam juice, and cup water. Add the potatoes and simmer for 15 minutes or until potatoes are fork tender. Add the clams, cream, and thyme. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Enjoy!