Sunday, February 19, 2012

Leeky Clam Chowder

I'm still working out the fine details of this, but here is a delicious start:

3 slices bacon
2 T butter
3 leeks
2 celery stalks
4 small-med yellow potatoes
1 bay leaf
Juice from 2 cans clams
½ cup dry white wine
2 ½ cups bottle clam juice
2 cans clams
1 cup cream
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
Pinch cayenne
chopped parsley for garnish
Cook bacon in large soup pot over medium heat, stirring until crisp, about six minutes, then transfer bacon with a slotted spoon to paper towels to drain.  Add butter to pot and when foam subsides, add leeks, celery and bay leaf stirring occasionally until vegetables are softened  12 – 15 minutes.
While vegetables are cooking, peel and cut potatoes into ½ “ pieces.    Add wine to softened vegetables and boil until reduced by half – 1 to 2 minutes.   Add potatoes, drained clam juice and bottled clam juice.  Simmer, covered, until potatoes are tender 15-20 minutes.
Puree 2 cups soup in a blender until very smooth and return to pot.  Add cream, salt, pepper and cayenne and cook at a bare simmer, stirring, until soup is heated through (don’t boil).  Add clams and cook stirring 1 to 2 minutes.  Remove from heat, discard bay leaf and stir in parsley.  Serve topped with crumbled bacon.

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