Schmearls Clam Chowder
For two years while still in college I used to work for a restaurant that rhymes with Shmearl’s. Anyways, over two years of late night bartending, double shifts and having family come in to visit while I was working there were a lot of days when all I had time to eat was a bowl of soup. The soup of choice was Clam Chowder. I never got the recipe; I asked, but it was not given up despite knowing all the chefs and having them over to my house for parties quite often. So finally after I left the restaurant and after I had officially eaten my 1,000th bowl I decided to try and make the recipe up myself. So here it is, and it’s pretty damn close. Not to mention delicious!
- 15 minutes
- 30 minutes
- 2-4 slices of center cut bacon diced
- 1 large onion cut diced
- 1/2 tsp. thyme (powdered or leaves)
- 2 bay leaves
- 1/2 cup of instant potato flakes or left over mashed potatoes
- 2 bottles of clam juice
- 2 cans minced clams (save clam juice for use in chowder)
- 6-9 new potatoes cubed (about 1/4″)
- 2 Carrots; sliced
- 3 roma tomatoes; diced
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- salt and pepper to taste
Follow This Recipe
- In a large soup pot, fry diced bacon over medium heat until half cooked (should be pink not red).
- There should be about 2 tbs. bacon fat in the pot now, but if there isn’t add a dash of olive oil to the pot.
- Add onion, carrots and potatoes and saute, stirring constantly, with bacon until fragrant and almost soft (about 5 minutes.)
- Add thyme and bay leaves and continue to stir for 30-45 seconds.
- Stir in clam juice from the bottles and clam juice taken from the cans.
- Add some water (about a cup if there isn’t enough liquid.) Bring liquid to a simmer for about 10 minutes or until potatoes soften.
- Starch from potatoes should thicken the liquid, but add the potato flakes or mashed potatoes to thicken it up if necessary. Stir in clams, heavy cream, tomatoes and parsley.
- Then use salt and pepper to taste.
- Reduce heat to medium-low and heat though.
- It will save you a lot of stress if you cut up and dice everything before even starting the chowder.
- If you don’t trust yourself not to burn the bacon, pull it out before putting the potatoes, onion and carrots in. Throw it back in when you add the clam juice.
- I love the taste of clams, but hate the texture. With a food processor or sharp knife go back through the canned clams and finely mince. If you’re the opposite, feel free to use more clams and substitute the clam juice from them for the extra water.
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