NEW ENGLAND CLAM CHOWDER (CHOWDAHH)

½-pound bacon

6 medium potatoes, chopped in 1” dice (about 6 cups)

1 stick butter

2 large onions, chopped

2 teaspoons salt

3 teaspoons black pepper

1 teaspoon Old Bay seasoning

1-quart clam broth or seafood stock

1-quart light cream

1-quart heavy cream

1 cup milk

½ cup corn starch

3-pounds fresh chopped clams

Cook the bacon in a large Dutch oven (8-10 quart) over medium high heat, until crisp.  Remove from the pot and chop into small pieces.  Set aside.  Remove all of the bacon grease from the pot except a thin layer on the bottom of the pot.

While bacon cooks, place the potatoes in a large saucepan and cover with cold water.  Cook on medium high heat, stirring occasionally, until the potatoes are just fork tender.  Drain and set aside.

Add the butter and onions to the bacon grease in the Dutch oven and cook over medium heat until onions are soft and fragrant.  Add the chopped bacon back to the pot along with salt, pepper, and Old Bay.  Stir to combine.  Add the broth, light cream, and heavy cream to the pot.  Bring to a low boil, stirring frequently.  Reduce heat to low and cook for 20-30 minutes letting the liquid reduce and careful not let it come to a heavy boil.

In a small bowl, whisk the corn starch and milk together until smooth.  Add this mixture to the stock and stir.  This will thicken the soup.  Add the clams and cooked potatoes to the pot.  Cook on medium low heat, stirring frequently, for another 20-30 minutes, letting the clams cook and the flavors meld.

Serve steaming hot with oyster crackers on the side and good crusty bread.  Deeeeelishhhh!

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