Sea Hag Clam Chowder
Best in the West New England Chowder
- 3- 6 1/2 oz. cans chopped clams
- 4- 8 oz. bottles clam juice
- 3/4 oz. Minor's clam base, about 1 T., optional
- 1/4 t. dries basil
- 1/4 t. dried thyme
- 3/4 cup butter or margarine
- 1 cup all purpose flour
- 1/2 lb. chopped bacon, ends and pieces preferred
- 3/4 cup chopped celery
- 3/4 cup chopped onion
- 3 cups chopped, peeled potatoes
- 4 cups scalded milk, or half and half
- chopped fresh parsley
Drain clams, reserving juice. Combine reserved juice and clam juice in a large soup pot. Stir in clam base, optional, basil and thyme. Bring to a boil.
In the meantime, melt 3/4 cup butter or margarine over medium heat in a small saucepan. Stir in flour to make a roux. Continue to cook for 20 min., stirring occasionally.
In a separate skillet, cook the bacon until limp and slightly brown on the edges. Drain off excess fat. Add the celery and onions. Continue to cook for 5 minutes, or until tender crisp.
Cook potatoes in lightly salted water just until tender, drain.
Stir roux into boiling clam juice, using a wire whisk to blend thoroughly. Stir in clams, bacon mixture and potatoes. Bring mixture back to a boil, then reduce heat. Stir in scalded milk or half and half. Do not let soup boil.
Top each serving with butter and fresh chopped parsley.