Manhattan Clam Chowder

Many fans of clam chowder have a rather strong opinion on which variety of chowder is better, New England or Manhattan. We think it’s like comparing apples and oranges though – one is creamy and rich, the other tangy and hearty. Both are delicious, so if you’re a clam lover, it just depends on what you’re in the mood for.

Manhattan Clam Chowder

Manhattan Clam Chowder

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Our Manhattan Clam Chowder is a tomato based chowder made with fresh littleneck clams, bacon, onion, carrots, celery and red and green bell pepper.

Ingredients

  • 6 dozen littleneck clams
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 cup clam juice
  • 1/4 cup dry white wine
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1/4 lb bacon, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 1/2 cup onion, chopped
  • 2 carrots, peeled and diced
  • 2 stalks celery, diced
  • 1 can, 28-ounce diced tomatoes,undrained
  • 4 red bliss potatoes, cut into small pieces
  • 1/2 medium red bell pepper, seeded and diced
  • 1/2 medium green bell pepper, seeded and diced
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • Hot sauce to taste
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped
  • Oyster crackers

Instructions

  • Rinse the clams under cool water to remove any sand or dirt and place them in the bottom of a large pot with a lid.
  • Add the water, clam juice, wine and bay leaves, cover tightly and bring to a simmer.
  • Cook until all of the clams have opened, 8 to 12 minutes. Transfer the clams and all of their liquid to a large bowl and set aside to cool slightly.
  • Add the bacon to the pan and cook over medium heat until it renders its fat and begins to crisp. Add the onion and carrot and cook for 2 minutes, stirring frequently.
  • Add the celery and continue cooking the mixture until the onions begin to caramelize, 2 to 3 minutes longer.
  • Stir in the tomatoes, potatoes and red and green bell pepper. Season with a few grinds of black pepper and hot sauce to taste (we used about 1 teaspoon). Cover and reduce the heat to medium-low.
  • Strain the broth from the clams through a fine strainer or piece of cheesecloth to remove any sand (and the bay leaves), then stir the broth into the soup.
  • Cover and continue cooking until the potatoes are tender, 8 to 10 minutes.
  • While the soup simmers, remove the clams from their shells, set aside and discard the shells.
  • Add the clams to the soup and cook for 1 minute to heat through. To serve, ladle the soup into bowls, sprinkle with parsley and a handful of oyster crackers.
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