January 24, 2010
Cold winter Sundays watching playoff football scream for a large pot of chowder. A thick hearty soup warms the body and soul. My mom used to cook this in my youth, but I perfected the recipe about 5 years ago by doubling the bacon and adding lump crab meat.
Any recipe that starts with 2lbs of bacon has to be good! This is the ulitmate comfort food, best served in a sourdough bread bowl. It takes about an hour to cook, but is worth every second.
- 2 lbs bacon
- 28 oz canned clams
- 6 – 8oz lump meat crab
- 5 – 7 large russet potatos
- 1 large white onion
- 1 stalk celery
- salt and pepper
- 1 pint half and half
- 1 pint non-fat milk
- small sourdough loaves for serving
Fry 2 lbs of bacon in a large stock pot until crisp. Remove bacon and set aside. Discard all but 1/4 cup of bacon greese. Finely dice the onion and celery. Add onion, celery and salt and pepper to pot. Fry onion and celery in remaing bacon greese, scraping the bottom of the pot to free the bacon bits. Fry until onion is translucent.
Peel and dice 1/2 the potatos into large 1 inch cubes. Dice the other 1/2 potatos into very small cubes, approximately 1/4 inch. Drain the clams reserving all the liquid. Add water to the clam juice bringing the total volume up to 4 cups. After the onions and celery are cooked, add the clam juice to the pot and bring to a boil. Add all the potatos to the pot and boil for 15 minutes, until the large cubes are soft and fully cooked. Add the milk, cream, clams, crab and bacon. Bring pot to a boil and then reduce to a simmer. Salt and pepper to taste.
Cut the tops off the soudough loaves. Dig out the loaf to create a bowl, saving the bread for dipping. I prefer the brown-and-serve loaves if I can find them. If using brown-and-serve, cut the tops off before you bake them. It makes it much easier to scoop out the bread once they are hot. Ladle in soup and eat. Enjoy!