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MASSACHUSETTS

New England Clam Chowder

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 tsp canola oil
  • 4 slices bacon, chopped1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 stalks celery, chopped
  • 2 tsp chopped fresh thyme, or 1 tsp dried
  • 1 medium red potato, diced
  • 1 (8oz.) bottle clam juice
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 3 cups low-fat milk
  • ½ cup heavy cream
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • ¾ tsp salt
  • 12 ounces fresh clam strips, chopped, or 3 (6 oz.) cans chopped baby clams, rinsed
  • 2 scallions, thinly sliced

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat.  Add bacon and cook until crispy, 4-6 minutes. Transfer half of the cooked bacon to a paper towel-lined plate with a slotted spoon. Add onion, celery and thyme to the pan; cook, stirring, until it begins to soften, about 2 minutes.
  2. Add potato, clam juice, and bay leaf. Bring to a simmer, cover and cook until the vegetables are just tender, 8 – 10 minutes.
  3. Whisk milk, cream, flour and salt in a medium bowl. Add to the pan and return to a simmer, stirring, over medium-high heat. Cook, stirring, until thickened, about 2 minutes.  Add clams and cook, stirring occasionally, until the clams are just cooked through, about 3 minutes more.
  4. To serve, discard bay leaf.  Ladle into bowls and top each service with some of the reserved bacon and scallions.
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