It’s New England Clam Chowder Day! Chowders originated in fishing villages on the coast of France in the 16th century. Back then any kind of fish chowder was considered a poor man’s dish. Most recipes called for salt pork and biscuits, which were both part of a standard sailor’s ration. Today, we’ve substituted the biscuits (also known as hardtack) for salty crackers!
There are many different varieties of clam chowder including New England, Manhattan, Rhode Island, Down East, and Outer Banks. New England clam chowder is made with milk or cream, and the use of tomatoes is frowned upon. In fact, in 1939 the state of Maine made it illegal to put tomatoes in clam chowder!
Celebrate this great culinary tradition and enjoy a bowl of delicious chowder in honor of New England Clam Chowder Day!
- Courtesy: Punchbowl.com
2-3 pounds fresh clams, cleaned (can use can but fresh is better)
5 slices of bacon, diced
2 celery stalks, diced
1/2 a leek, diced
1 cup clam juice
1/3 cup flour
2 tablespoons dried red jalapeños
4 cups chicken broth
3 good flaky biscuits
6 red potatoes, diced
4 roasted green chiles, diced
1/3 cup heavy cream
1 tablespoon roasted garlic
1. In a large pot, heat on medium. Add bacon, cook until crisp. Once crisp, remove bacon for later.
2. Add celery and leeks. Sauté until translucent. Add green chiles.
3. Add flour, stirring well. Cook for a few minutes.
4. Add clam juice and dried jalapenos. Bring to slow simmer.
5. Add 1 1/2 cups chicken broth, potatoes and garlic.
6. Let cook for 15 minutes; add heavy cream and clams.
7. Lower heat and slow simmer for 5 minutes. Season with sea salt and fresh pepper.
8. In another pot, heat remainder of chicken broth; bring to simmer.
9. Cut each biscuit into 6 pieces and roll into small balls. Place in simmering chicken broth.
10. Cook for 8 to 10 minutes. Cut one open to make sure dough is cooked through.
11. Add to chowder.
12. Serve hot. Garnish with bacon and dried jalapeños.
Boot Hill Saloon & Grill
909 Vega Blvd. Vega