The cold weather is here! Time for soup.
I love cold weather better than hot weather and the reason is I love making soups. After living in Texas for over 30 years now I decided long ago that you can’t wait for it to turn cold to have a reason to make a good belly warming soup; you just have to go for it and if you have to, turn your AC really cold and you will think its one of those winter months that’s begging you to make soup.
There are almost thirty soup recipes posted to this blog so when you are wanting a one pot dinner, take a look at my archives. I’ve been making clam chowder for years. My sister, Terry, and I have always used the same recipe that was suppose to be from a Noah’s Ark restaurant in St. Charles, Missouri. We thought it was easy and a no-brainer of a recipe; all Cambell’s canned soups that we would add clams and a bottle of clam juice. We would use a can of clam chowder, cream of celery, cream of onion, and cream of potato soups and then add some milk and the clams and bottle of juice. Well, it was/is easy but you have all those “canned” not homemade soups. Try it sometime. If you have all these soups in your pantry and you are rushed for dinner some night you can throw this together in a matter of minutes. I also use to add half a stick of butter to the soup pot. It’s good but nothing like a nice homemade pot of soup.
This clam chowder recipe I found a Damn Delicious website. I love her recipes. Sometimes I follow exactly but most of the3 times I have my own changes I want to make to the recipe. This recipe I followed pretty closely. I thought the 1/2 tsp. dried thyme was almost a little too much. Next time I will use my fresh growing outside as long as it hasn’t frozen. The original recipe called for one onion; but onions so so big now and who knows what size you have. I used one cup chopped onion.I added the bottle of clam juice and a extra can of clams (the large can). I may experiment with using my stick blender and puree the onions and some of the potatoes before adding in the clams.
We loved this soup and I had to serve the little oyster crackers with it. Maybe I’ll try a good cornbread stick the next time.
Give it a try some cold night when you want a cup/bowl of soup to sit in front of a crackling fire and watch the snow come down. Oh well, I may have a wait here in Texas to see snow falling.
BLAST FROM THE PAST: I love beans and you can’t go wrong with this White Bean Soup with Ham.
Fry your bacon and drain on paper towels. Set aside for garnishing your bowl of soup.
Leave about one tablespoon of butter in soup pot. Add the butter and melt and then add the garlic and onion, stir frequently over medium heat until onions are translucent. This should take about 2-3 minutes. Whisk in the flour and stir until lightly brown about a minute. Add in the thyme.
Whisk in the vegetable stock, clam juice and bay leaf and cook while whisking until slightly thickened, 1-2 minutes. Stir in the potatoes.
Add in the clams and clam juice.
All I can say is Yum! and I will never be making that “canned” version again.
Winter Worthy Clam Chowder
- 4 slices bacon diced and fried until crisp, for garnish
- 2 Tbsp. butter
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1 cup onion finely minced
- 1/2 tsp.dried thyme leaves
- 3 Tbsp. all purpose flour
- 1 c. milk
- 1 c. chicken stock or vegetable
- 1 bottle clam juice
- 2- 6.5 cans chopped clams reserve juice
- 1 large can whole clams reserve juice
- 1 bay leaf
- 3-4 c. chopped russet potatoes peeled
- 1 c. Half and Half
- salt and pepper to taste
- 2 Tbsp. chopped fresh parsley for garnish
- finely grated cheddar for garnish
- very thinly sliced green onion optional garnish
- In a large soup pot fry the bacon util brown and crispy, about 6-8 minutes. Drain on paper towels. Put one tablespoon of the bacon fat back in soup pot and add the garlic and onions, cook on medium heat until the onions are translucent, 2-3 minutes. Add in the thyme and stir until fragrant, 1 minute
- Whisk in the flour until lightly browned, about 1 minute. You will want to make sure the flour gets brown so you don't have a pasty taste. Slowly whisk in the milk, stock, clam juice from canned clams plus the bottle of clam juice and bay leaf and cook, stirring constantly until thickened about 1-2 minutes.Stir in potatoes.
- Bring pot to boil; reduce heat and simmer until potatoes are tender about 12-15 minutes. I like my potatoes cut in about 1/2" dice. Stir in Half & Half and clams until heated, 1-2 minutes; season, to taste, with salt and pepper.
- Serve garnished with bacon, parsley, cheese and/or green onions.
- We love serve the little oyster crackers with this soup.