Recipe courtesy of chef Cindy Hutson. Reprinted with permission from her cookbook, From The Tip of My Tongue.
- 4 strips of bacon
- 4 Tablespoons salted butter
- 1 large Walla Walla onion (or other sweet variety), diced small
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 Cup brunoised celery
- 1 ½ Cup brunoised carrots
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 Cups diced new red-skin potatoes, skin on, washed and dried
- 3 Cups clam broth (fresh or bottled)
- 4 Pounds clams, rinsed and purged to remove sand
- 8 Ounces chopped clams, canned or frozen
- 3 Cups heavy cream
- 1 Cup mashed potatoes
- ¼ Cup chopped parsley, for garnish
- Kosher salt, to taste
- Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 4 ears pan-charred corn
Place the whole strips of bacon in a stockpot over medium-high heat. Add the butter, onion, and garlic and sauté just until the bacon is crisp.
Add the celery, carrots, and bay leaves and continue sautéing for 4 minutes. Add the potatoes and stir for 2 minutes. Then, pour in the clam broth and stir. Simmer for 10 minutes.
Place the clams in the pot and cover. Simmer until claims open and then pour in the heavy cream. Add the chopped claims and simmer, uncovered, for 5 minutes more. Remove the bacon and discard.
Warm the mashed potatoes in a microwave and whisk some into the soup to thicken it, adding more if needed. Taste and adjust the seasoning if necessary.
Divide the chowder among 8 bowls and garnish with parsley and black pepper. Serve with half an ear of charred corn and a cocktail fork for the clams.