Classic New England Clam Chowder
This is my mother, Susan Halme's, recipe for Clam Chowder. It is a quick and easy soup to make on a cold night. Personally, I love clam chowder anytime. Of course you can use fresh clams or make a fancier version. But this is a comfort food basic version that our family loves.
CLASSIC NEW ENGLAND CLAM CHOWDER
6 slices bacon, diced
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 medium yellow onion, diced
2 stalks celery, chopped
2 tablespoon flour
1-2 tablespoons butter
4 cups whole milk or half-and-half
2 teaspoons kosher salt
2 pounds potatoes (about five medium potatoes)
peeled and chopped
6 cans (6.5 ounces) chopped clams with juice
1 teaspoon Tabasco sauce
2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce, optional
1 tablespoon dry sherry, optional
In a large heavy stockpot over medium-high heat, cook bacon in the olive oil until crisp (about 4 to 6 minutes.) Add the onion and saute until translucent and soft, about five minutes. Sprinkle onions with a pinch of kosher salt, then add celery and saute for an additional five minutes.
Lower the heat and sprinkle flour over the onion, celery and bacon mixture. Add butter if desired. Stir constantly over low heat, cooking the flour with the vegetables for about two minutes.
Add the milk, salt and potatoes. Cook for 15-20 minutes over medium heat until the potatoes are tender.
Stir in the clams and their juice, then add Tabasco, Worcestershire and Dry Sherry if you wish.