My Foray Into Food Storage

A regular gal learning about Food Storage, Home Cooking, Canning, Gardening, and more!

Yummy, Creamy, Clammy Goodness – New England Clam Chowder

14 Comments

Don’t forget!  Tomorrow I start my first ever giveaway!  Click here for a sneak peek!

Rain was in the forecast here in soCal, and I had a hankering for some good, old-fashioned clam chowder.  And not just any clam chowder, Sheri’s clam chowder.  My friend, Sheri, is the best cook/baker/chef there ever was!  Everything she made was like manna from heaven.

 

Clam Chowder Goodness!

Clam Chowder Goodness!

Sheri made the best EVERYTHING: bread, cookies, candy, soup.  Anything and everything she touched became a deliciously, delectable creation!  Plus she spent less on it, because she knew what was truly important: butter, fresh ingredients, butter, time, butter, patience, and butter!  Sheri taught me how to make awesome food on a budget and have it taste like you spent a million bucks!  And a little butter didn’t hurt either.

 

She was kind enough to share her New England Clam Chowder recipe with me a few years ago.  I tweaked it a bit for personal taste (salt, sugar, amount of flour in the roux, and added extra potatoes), but it’s pretty close to her original recipe.  And the best part is that the soup only takes about 10 minutes of prep time and 30 minutes to cook for a total of about 40 minutes from refrigerator to table!

 

Now, don’t let the word roux scare you.  A roux is simply a fat (in this case butter) mixed with flour cooked on the stove to get rid of the “raw flour” taste.  It’s used to thicken a myriad of things, and it can be used as the base for tons of sauces, including cheese sauce.   I include step-by-step instructions not only for the soup, but also for making the roux, so you can do this at home.  And it’s super easy.  I promise!

Let’s begin with the recipe:

New England Clam Chowder (a.k.a. Boston Clam Chowder)

2 – 6 oz cans minced clams
1 cup chopped onion
1 cup diced celery
3 cups diced potatoes
1 8-oz. stick of salted butter
1/2 cup flour
1 quart half & half
1/2-1 teaspoon salt, to taste
1/2-2 teaspoons sugar, to taste
a dash of pepper, to taste

Wash your veggies well.  Peel potatoes, if desired.  Dice potatoes, onions, and celery.  You can leave the potatoes a little larger if you prefer. Put the vegetables into a saucepan.  Drain the liquid from the canned clams over the vegetables.  Add water so vegetables are covered in liquid.  Cover and simmer over medium heat until potatoes are tender, about 20 minutes.

While the vegetables are cooking, about 5 minutes before they are done, melt butter in another saucepan.  Add flour to the pan, and stir to blend (forming a roux).  Cook 1 to 2 minutes, then add the half & half.  Stir until smooth and thick.  (I like to use a whisk.)   Add the undrained vegetables and the clams.  Heat through, and season with salt, pepper and sugar, to taste.  Serve!

Sounds easy, doesn’t it?  Well it is!  Just watch!

Start with fresh ingredients!   I don't usually use green onion, but I had some leftover, and I didn't want them to go to waste, so they went into the pot!

Start with fresh ingredients!
I don’t usually use green onion, but I had some leftover, and I didn’t want them to go to waste, so they went into the pot!

Dice the veggies.  Here are the celery, green onion, and sweet yellow onion.

Dice the veggies. Here are the celery, green onion, and sweet yellow onion.

I added chopped potato as I like mine a bit bigger than a dice.

I added chopped potato as I like mine a bit bigger than a dice.

Drained the minced clams over the veggies, then I added enough water to cover the vegetables and put it on the stove to cook for about 20 minutes (until the potatoes were fork tender).

Drained the minced clams over the veggies, then I added enough water to cover the vegetables and put it on the stove to cook for about 20 minutes (until the potatoes were fork tender).

When the veggies were just about done, I started a roux.  I melted 1 stick of salted butter (1/2 cup) then added 1/2 cup of all-purpose flour.  I let it cook for a minute or two.

When the veggies were just about done, I started a roux. I melted 1 stick of salted butter (1/2 cup) then added 1/2 cup of all-purpose flour. I let it cook for a minute or two.

And I added the half-n-half.

And I added the half-n-half.

At first, it looked like this.  See how the roux is kind of sitting in the half and half?

At first, it looked like this. See how the roux is kind of sitting in the half and half?

I continued to heat it on medium and used a whisk until it looked like this.  It only took a couple of minutes.

I continued to heat the half-n-half and roux mixture on medium and used a whisk until it looked like this.
It only took a couple of minutes.

Meanwhile, the veggies finished up and were nice and tender without being too soft.

Meanwhile, the veggies finished up and were nice and tender without being too soft.

I dumped them in the butter, flour, half and half mixture, liquid and all.

I dumped them in the butter, flour, half and half mixture, liquid and all.

I stirred it gently to incorporate the veggies into the creamy roux mixture.

I stirred the soup gently to incorporate the veggies into the creamy roux mixture.

Then I added the drained, minced clams.  You can go with a diced clam, but I find the minced is a better texture for this soup.  The larger size of the diced clams doesn't work as well, imho.

Next, I added the drained, minced clams.
You can use diced clams, but I find the minced is a better texture for this soup. The larger size of the diced clams doesn’t work as well, imho.

See how nice that's looking?  I've added everything except for the seasoning.

See how nice that’s looking? I’ve added everything except for the seasoning.

In goes the salt, pepper, and sugar.   It is very important that you taste the soup as you do this.   I recommend that you start with 1/2 teaspoon of salt and 1 teaspoon of sugar.  Stir it in, let the flavors combine for a minute or so, then taste.  If it needs more, add it a little at a time.  My personal preference is 1 teaspoon of salt and 2 teaspoons of sugar with a couple dashes of pepper.

In goes the salt, pepper, and sugar.  It is very important that you taste the soup as you do this.
I recommend that you start with 1/2 teaspoon of salt and 1 teaspoon of sugar. Stir it in, let the flavors combine for a minute or so, then taste. If it needs more, add it a little at a time. My personal preference is 1 teaspoon of salt and 2 teaspoons of sugar with a couple dashes of pepper.

Voila!  You have lovely, creamy, New England Clam Chowder!

Voila! You have lovely, creamy, New England Clam Chowder!

Now, all I need is a loaf of crusty bread, and I’m set!  What do you think about that?  Roux isn’t so scary, now, is it?

So, tell me…  What’s your favorite rainy weather food? 

Advertisements

Author: Laurie Nguyen

I am a happily married, stay at home mom with four sons, ages 24, 22, 18, and 14. I'm not a professional blogger, and I'm certainly not a foodie or a chef. But I like food, so I think I'm qualified to write about my own life experience with food. Want to be a little more prepared for the unexpected? Check out my Food Storage Blog, http://forayintofoodstorage.com. Have a question about Food Storage? Email me: forayintofoodstorage@gmail.com.

14 thoughts on “Yummy, Creamy, Clammy Goodness – New England Clam Chowder

  1. Looks and sounds great, I love a good clam chowder!

    Like

  2. We, too, live in the rain belt (it’s thrilling, isn’t it?! There’s actually water in our creeks! – We’re in Santa Barbara). We, however, went for the big BIG cast iron pot of chili. If we can get down to the harbor tomorrow morning, maybe we can swing some of your chowder.

    Like

  3. This looks wonderful! I appreciate the recipe and the step by step directions — definitely going to give it a try! Clam Chowder is a family favorite so I’m anxious to get the ingredients now. We also like a variety of chili recipes in rainy or cold weather.

    Like

  4. My favourite rainy day food is a box of cinnamon buns – lordy help me if I wind up eating the whole box! Nice recipe for the Clam Chowder and I bet it would be super if we used some fresh clams in the recipe!

    Like

  5. Looks much better than the Clam Chowder I had in the company cafeteria today 🙂

    Like

  6. Ooh, your clam chowder looks delicious! I love mine with hunks of sourdough. Mmm mmm good!

    Like

  7. Looks great!. On rainy days, we like to make sancocho. It’s pretty much a stew with three different types of meat, yams, yucca, carrots, corn, dumplings, plantains, and yautia. It just warms up the soul, don’t you think?

    Like

  8. Yum!!!! I love how you have so many pictures on your blog!

    Like

  9. Reblogged this on My Foray Into Food Storage and commented:

    It’s a bit cool here in soCal, which makes me want a warm clam chowder. Here’s my favorite go-to recipe. Enjoy!

    Like

  10. YUM looks so good. One of my fav dishes!

    Like

  11. Looks and sounds great, Yummy… 🙂

    Like

  12. This sounds like a great recipe. I think I may try it.

    Like

  13. This dish is IN MY FUTURE! Great post, great idea for this time of year in Missouri, where you dont know if tomorrow (or even later today) will be summer or winter.

    Like

Question? Comment? Please share with me!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s