"Discover Cooking, Discuss Life."

Go Back   Discuss Cooking - Cooking Forums > Recipes & Ingredients > Soups, Stews & Casseroles > Soups
Click Here to Login
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
 
Old 10-04-2004, 08:38 PM   #1
Executive Chef
 
AllenOK's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: USA, Oklahoma
Posts: 3,463
Big Al's Wicked Good Clam Chowder

Big Al's Wicked Good Clam Chowder
Yields: 1 ½ gal

This is one of those recipes that my family and I just die for. When it gets colder, I usually make this at least once a month.
You'll notice that I caramelize the bacon, then add the vegetables and seasonings, and caramelize those as well. The reason for this is added flavor. When the vegetables hit the pan, and they start exuding their liquid, they will deglaze the pan a bit. However, once that liquid is cooked off, they will start to caramelize slightly. I look for this point. I'm always scraping the pan bottom trying to work all the good flavor into the vegetables, and once it's gone, I start keeping an eye on the pan bottom to see when the onions start to caramelize a bit. When I start to see color again, I add the clams and juice to deglaze the pan again.
A couple other tips: Cut the bacon last. This lessens the chance of any cross-contamination from the bacon to other things. Also, I find it easier to chop bacon like this when it's frozen. And lastly, don't add any salt until the very end, and taste it first! Then, if it needs salt, add a little. Remember that you are using salt-cured bacon, and salt water shellfish, so there will be plenty of salt in the chowder without needing any more.

8 slices thick sliced bacon, diced fine
1 ½ large onion, diced
1 ½ c celery, diced
1 ½ t Old Bay Seasoning, optional
½ t ground black pepper
1 ½ t tarragon
1 ½ t thyme
1 ½ t garlic, minced
2 # sized potatoes, peeled, and cubed into half inch cubes
33 oz (total) canned chopped sea clams with the juice (around here, that's about 6 cans)
2 8 oz bottles of Clam Juice
1 pt heavy cream
1 pt half and half
½ c corn starch mixed with ½ c water
salt and fresh ground pepper to taste

Fry the bacon in a large, heavy-bottomed stock pot over medium-high until the bacon starts to crisp, and you see lots of color and brown bits in the pan. At this time, add the onions, celery, garlic, pepper, thyme, tarragon, and Old Bay seasoning, if desired. When the onions are translucent and slightly caramelized, add the clams, juice, and potatoes; adding a little water if needed to cover the potatoes. Simmer over medium heat until potatoes are tender, about 15 minutes. Add the cream, half-and-half, and bring to a boil. Add the cornstarch/water slurry and bring back to a boil to tighten the chowder. Taste and season with more salt and pepper if needed.

__________________

__________________
Peace, Love, and Vegetable Rights!
Eat Meat and Save the Plants!
AllenOK is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-06-2006, 02:05 PM   #2
Contest Winner
 
grumblebee's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: canada
Posts: 720
After a bit of searching, I found your recipe! (you mentioned it in that other thread about clam chowder and celery) Looks good. I don't eat bacon though - do you think it would be okay without the bacon and I just saute the veggies in some olive oil or butter?
__________________

__________________
~passionate pescetarian~
grumblebee is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-06-2006, 02:06 PM   #3
Chef Extraordinaire
 
pdswife's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Mazatlan
Posts: 20,334
Send a message via AIM to pdswife Send a message via MSN to pdswife Send a message via Yahoo to pdswife
I'm sure it would be fine Grumblebee...
a little different from the above but still goooood!
__________________
Love the life you live!
pdswife is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-06-2006, 03:40 PM   #4
Executive Chef
 
AllenOK's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: USA, Oklahoma
Posts: 3,463
Butter would be your best bet.
__________________
Peace, Love, and Vegetable Rights!
Eat Meat and Save the Plants!
AllenOK is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-06-2006, 04:26 PM   #5
Chief Eating Officer
 
GB's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: USA,Massachusetts
Posts: 25,509
grumblebee do you not eat bacon as well as bacon fat or is it just the meat you do not want? if you can still use the bacon fat, but not include the bacon pieces that that would still work pretty well.

If you object to the fat as well then like pdswife said it would still be good, just different and like Allen said go with butter over the olive oil if you can.
__________________
You know you can't resist clicking
this link. Your eyes will thank you. VISUAL BLISS
GB is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-06-2006, 04:44 PM   #6
Chef Extraordinaire
 
kitchenelf's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: North Carolina
Posts: 19,725
Send a message via MSN to kitchenelf
Butter is a good suggestion - and the well-caramelized vegetables will add TONS of flavor. I'd be tempted to start my potatoes cooking by caramelizing them too.

I wonder how just a drop or two of smoke flavoring would work? I'm not a fan of smoke flavoring because I do a lot of cooking on my smoker - but I know a lot of people who use that flavoring and love it.
__________________
kitchenelf

"Count yourself...you ain't so many" - quote from Buck's Daddy
kitchenelf is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-06-2006, 10:15 PM   #7
Contest Winner
 
grumblebee's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: canada
Posts: 720
Quote:
Originally Posted by GB
grumblebee do you not eat bacon as well as bacon fat or is it just the meat you do not want? if you can still use the bacon fat, but not include the bacon pieces that that would still work pretty well.

If you object to the fat as well then like pdswife said it would still be good, just different and like Allen said go with butter over the olive oil if you can.
I dont eat any pork/beef/chicken (or lard or any "fats" from those animals) I do eat fish/seafood though.

Anyway, I think you guys are right about using butter. Olive oil might make it taste funny. And kitchenelf, your idea of using smoke flavouring is a good one. That would give it a slightly smokey "bacon" flavour without the actual bacon.
__________________
~passionate pescetarian~
grumblebee is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-07-2006, 08:05 AM   #8
Chief Eating Officer
 
GB's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: USA,Massachusetts
Posts: 25,509
I have had many amazing clam chowders without bacon. I am sure this one will work very well for you grumblebee. Let us know how it turns out.
__________________
You know you can't resist clicking
this link. Your eyes will thank you. VISUAL BLISS
GB is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-07-2006, 09:34 AM   #9
Executive Chef
 
AllenOK's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: USA, Oklahoma
Posts: 3,463
Quote:
Originally Posted by kitchenelf
I wonder how just a drop or two of smoke flavoring would work? I'm not a fan of smoke flavoring because I do a lot of cooking on my smoker - but I know a lot of people who use that flavoring and love it.
Why, WHY!?!? Must you torture me with more ideas of something to try

Actually, I'm not sure what a few drops of smoke flavoring would do, but, maybe sub one of the small cans of clams with a can a smoked clams?
__________________
Peace, Love, and Vegetable Rights!
Eat Meat and Save the Plants!
AllenOK is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-07-2006, 09:37 AM   #10
Chief Eating Officer
 
GB's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: USA,Massachusetts
Posts: 25,509
Quote:
Originally Posted by AllenMI
maybe sub one of the small cans of clams with a can a smoked clams?
That sounds REALLY interesting!
__________________
You know you can't resist clicking
this link. Your eyes will thank you. VISUAL BLISS
GB is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-07-2006, 10:30 AM   #11
Contest Winner
 
grumblebee's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: canada
Posts: 720
Quote:
Originally Posted by AllenMI
Actually, I'm not sure what a few drops of smoke flavoring would do, but, maybe sub one of the small cans of clams with a can a smoked clams?
That does sound really good! I am so glad I came on the internet before I headed out to the market this morning. I'm planning on making this chowder this afternoon (and baking some nice bread too! I feel so domestic...LOL ) I'm going to use a can of smoked clams and let you know how it works out!
__________________
~passionate pescetarian~
grumblebee is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-07-2006, 11:00 AM   #12
Chef Extraordinaire
 
buckytom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: My mountain
Posts: 21,539
looks good allen. clam chowdah is a fave in my house too. i've never made one before, so i think i'll try your recipe. thanks.

Quote:
Originally Posted by grumblebee
That does sound really good! I am so glad I came on the internet before I headed out to the market this morning
things like this make me wonder why foodtv starts it's daily programming at 9:30am on weekdays. what about all of those little old ladies (and me ) that like to get thier food shopping done early, and plan the day's meals just as early?
__________________
The past is gone it's all been said.
So here's to what the future brings,
I know tomorrow you'll find better things
buckytom is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-07-2006, 08:55 PM   #13
Contest Winner
 
grumblebee's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: canada
Posts: 720
Quote:
Originally Posted by buckytom
things like this make me wonder why foodtv starts it's daily programming at 9:30am on weekdays. what about all of those little old ladies (and me ) that like to get thier food shopping done early, and plan the day's meals just as early?
Hehe.. I'm the same way. I like doing my food shopping EARLY (like right when the store opens) There is usually only a handful of people out shopping at that time and it's so much easier! Plus, planning and preparing things early means relaxing and not stressing about "what's for supper" later on?

Anyhow, I made this chowder tonight and I used smoked clams. It turned out so delicious! I also omitted the bacon and just sauteed the veg in a pat of butter - everything caramalized nicely and the flavour was terrific. The smoked clams really added a nice, subtle flavour - I will be making this again!

For those who love a nice, creamy clam chowder, give it a try with the smoked clams... it's really quite delicious.
__________________
~passionate pescetarian~
grumblebee is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-07-2006, 09:02 PM   #14
Chef Extraordinaire
 
kitchenelf's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: North Carolina
Posts: 19,725
Send a message via MSN to kitchenelf
Quote:
Originally Posted by AllenMI
Why, WHY!?!? Must you torture me
...your wife pays me big bucks to torture you
__________________
kitchenelf

"Count yourself...you ain't so many" - quote from Buck's Daddy
kitchenelf is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-07-2006, 09:16 PM   #15
Master Chef
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Texas
Posts: 5,296
Yum

AllenMI...this I have to try... sounds too good to be true! Even in this Texas heat!!!
sattie is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-07-2006, 09:41 PM   #16
Executive Chef
 
AllenOK's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: USA, Oklahoma
Posts: 3,463
Quote:
Originally Posted by kitchenelf
...your wife pays me big bucks to torture you
ROFL! I just showed this to PeppA, and she came >< that close to spraying pop out through her nose and over the screen of my laptop!

Heck, I may have to try the smoked clams once, to see what it tastes like.
__________________
Peace, Love, and Vegetable Rights!
Eat Meat and Save the Plants!
AllenOK is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-08-2006, 08:59 AM   #17
Chef Extraordinaire
 
buckytom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: My mountain
Posts: 21,539
Quote:
Originally Posted by grumblebee
Hehe.. I'm the same way. I like doing my food shopping EARLY (like right when the store opens) There is usually only a handful of people out shopping at that time and it's so much easier! Plus, planning and preparing things early means relaxing and not stressing about "what's for supper" later on?
grumbl, i like to do my food shopping after working my weekly midnight shifts, around 7:30 or 8am. it's just me, and very short old ladies on a mission.
lol, you wouldn't believe how often i am asked to get stuff form the top shelves
there's better selection, especially with meats; the shelves are rarely out of anything; and you begin the day having already accomplished one of your tasks that would be much more time consuming later.
__________________
The past is gone it's all been said.
So here's to what the future brings,
I know tomorrow you'll find better things
buckytom is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-08-2006, 09:02 AM   #18
Chief Eating Officer
 
GB's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: USA,Massachusetts
Posts: 25,509
I enjoy going shopping at 1 or 2am every once in a while. The selection stinks, but the people watching is great. You get some real freaks in the supermarket at those times. I wonder if they are looking at me thinking the same thing
__________________
You know you can't resist clicking
this link. Your eyes will thank you. VISUAL BLISS
GB is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-08-2006, 05:22 PM   #19
Chef Extraordinaire
 
mudbug's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: NoVA, beyond the Beltway
Posts: 11,166
they are, geebs. Watch out and act normal.
__________________
Kool Aid - Think before you drink.
mudbug is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-08-2006, 05:57 PM   #20
Master Chef
 
Chief Longwind Of The North's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: USA,Michigan
Posts: 9,645
Quote:
Originally Posted by grumblebee
I dont eat any pork/beef/chicken (or lard or any "fats" from those animals) I do eat fish/seafood though.

Anyway, I think you guys are right about using butter. Olive oil might make it taste funny. And kitchenelf, your idea of using smoke flavouring is a good one. That would give it a slightly smokey "bacon" flavour without the actual bacon.
To add teh smokey flavor that will be missed by the omission of bacon, add just a touch of hickory liquid smoke flavoring. But be careful as it's a very strong flavoring. A few drops goes a long way. And you chowder will gain a wonderfully smokey accent that will ballance perfectly against the salt and the clam sweetness.

Seeeeeya; Goodweed of the North
__________________

__________________
“No amount of success outside the home can compensate for failure within the home…"

Check out my blog for the friendliest cooking instruction on the net. Go ahead. You know you want to.- https://gwnorthsfamilycookin.wordpress.com/
Chief Longwind Of The North is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
None

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Clam Chowder pdswife Soups 26 10-16-2005 09:11 PM
freezing clam chowder Merlin Fish & Seafood 6 11-29-2004 06:27 PM
Clam Chowder kitchenelf Soups 2 06-11-2004 02:39 PM
My Mom's Clam Chowder (Neither New England nor Manhattan) RAYT721 Soups 1 06-05-2004 03:55 PM




Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 02:38 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
×