Clam chowder is a rich and creamy soup made with clams, potatoes, onions, and sometimes bacon or salt pork. It is a popular dish in New England cuisine and is enjoyed in many coastal regions. Here’s a classic New England-style clam chowder recipe:
- In a large pot or Dutch oven, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the chopped onions and diced celery, and sauté until they become soft and translucent.
- Stir in the all-purpose flour and cook for a couple of minutes, stirring constantly to form a roux. This will help thicken the chowder.
- Add the water, diced potatoes, bay leaf, dried thyme, ground black pepper, and a pinch of salt. Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce the heat to low, cover the pot, and let it simmer for about 15-20 minutes or until the potatoes are tender.
- Once the potatoes are cooked, add the chopped clams and milk (or half-and-half) to the pot. Stir well to combine.
- Continue to simmer the chowder on low heat for another 10-15 minutes, stirring occasionally, to allow the flavors to meld together and the chowder to thicken slightly.
- Taste the chowder and adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper as needed.
- If you prefer a thicker consistency, you can mash some of the potatoes against the side of the pot with a fork to release their starch and thicken the chowder.
- Ladle the clam chowder into bowls and garnish with crumbled bacon, if desired.
Serve the creamy clam chowder hot with oyster crackers or crusty bread on the side. It’s a hearty and satisfying soup, perfect for chilly days or as a comforting meal anytime you crave the flavors of the sea. Enjoy!