Saturday, December 4, 2010

Sharla's Clam Chowder

Happy Friday Folks!

This post is devoted to my wonderful and cherished friend Sharla :) We met online and first became buddies from our love of horses. Next we found we both LOVED art and the friendship grew. THEN we both found that we loved all things food. I just can't say enough good things about this girl. The funny thing is....we have never met. She lives in Arkansas right now and well...I'm in Utah. We talk most every day and one of our most favorite pastimes (aside from taking pictures of cool or extra yummy things we find to eat) is to share recipes. Let me tell ya, this girl can COOK! This is really one of the best clam chowder recipes ever and thanks to Sharla, I can eat it whenever I want and share it with you :)

We start with our ingredient lineup
Start out with a large pot and on medium heat, fry up 2-3 pieces of bacon that has been halfed. Once the bacon in nearly cooked, add 2 diced celery stalks and 1 diced small onion. Stir occasionally until the veggies are tender.

While the bacon, celery, and onions are cooking, dice up 3-4 potatoes. Now I know y'all don't need to see what a bowl full of diced potatoes look like, but I just thought the little red taters and the blue glass bowl looked so pretty :)

Once the celery and onion are nice and tender, whisk in 1 cup water, 1 bottle of clam juice, and 1 cup chicken broth. (Now you can omit the chicken broth and use another bottle of clam juice if you prefer). Then stir in the 4 cans of clams and the potatoes. Bring to a boil then reduce to a simmer. Now add 1/4 teaspoon thyme, 2 tablespoons parsley, and 1 bay leaf. Simmer until the potatoes are just about cooked. Now this recipe originally calls for flour or starch as a thickener and it was VERY easy to change that to my new favorite Gluten Free cooking staple....Sweet Rice Flour. Neat thing about sweet rice flour is that you can buy it for a lot cheaper at Asian markets. It is a very popular flour for sauces, soups, and thickeners. Anyway, while your soup is simmering, make a slurry of a bit of water and 3 Tablespoons sweet rice flour.

When the potatoes are tender but not all the way cooked yet, stir in 1 can of evaporated milk (now Sharla I KNOW your recipe calls for half and half, but I almost never have any on hand and evaporated milk adds such a nice rich taste :). Then slowly whisk in your slurry. Simmer on low medium until soup reaches the desired consistency. 

Nothing better on a cold winter day then a savory bowl full of comfort. Thank you Sharla for my favorite clam chowder recipe and for being my bestest ATNB :) Love you girly!!!

Recipe Breakdown:
2-3 pieces of bacon halved
1 diced small onion
2 diced celery stalks
3-4 diced potatoes
3 tablespoons sweet rice flour
2 tablespoons cold water
4 5oz cans clams
1 cup water
1 cup chicken broth
1 8oz jar clam juice (can use 2 bottles and omit the chicken broth)
1/4 teaspoon thyme
1 bay leaf
2 tablespoons parsley
1 can evaporated milk

Saute bacon in large pot over medium heat and add the onion and celery when bacon is almost crispy. Cook until the celery and onion is tender. Next whisk in 1 cup water, 1 8oz bottle of clam juice, and 1 cup chicken broth. Then add the potatoes. Bring to a boil then reduce to a simmer. Add the bay leaf, thyme, and parsley. Once potatoes are just about softened, make a slurry of 3 tablespoons sweet rice flour and 2 tablespoons cold water. Stir the evaporated milk and canned clams into the soup, then slowly whisk in the slurry. Keep simmering on low/medium until the soup reaches the desired consistency.

* You can use 2 8oz jars of clam juice and omit the chicken broth if desired.


1 comment:

  1. Oh my! LOVE THIS POST! lol! Jill you are awesome! I cherish you also and I don't hold a candle to your cooking knowledge! But thank you from the bottom of my gumbo pot :) Love ya! ~Shar