New England Clam Chowder

27 Nov

Hmmmm…remember I said I wanted to make lots of soup? Well, I made a french onion soup that was a total BOMB. Goodness. But, then I made my favorite soup of all time – New England Clam Chowder. I felt it was appropriate since I recently bought my ticket home to Washington for Christmas and every time I go home, I must have Ivar’s clam chowder. This recipe is adapted from Ivars clam chowder recipe, as said by the Seattle Times. My adjustments will follow.

Ingredients List:
– 2 6oz. cans of clams
– 4 stalks of celery, chopped
– 1 onion, chopped
– 4 cloves of garlic
– 4 red potatoes, cubed
– 4 slices of bacon, chopped and crispy
– 4 cups half and half
– 3/4 cup butter
– 3/4 cup flour
– Onion powder
– Garlic salt
– Salt and pepper
– Dash of sherry vinegar

The adjustments I think I would make next time:
This soup is very thick. Which is great, I loved it. However, in thinking about one change I would make next time….reduce half and half by one cup and increase clams by one can. Not that this is lacking in clams, but I would have liked the clam juice to get a stronger flavor broth.


1. I started off by cooking the garlic, onions, and celery in some butter until fragrant.

2. Add your potatoes, clam juice, and enough water to cover everything. Let this cook until the potatoes are tender – about 15 to 20 minutes.

3. While the potatoes and veggies are cooking, I chopped the bacon into bacon bite chunks and then cooked till crispy. Isn’t everything better with bacon?

4. In a separate pan, create a rue. Melt your butter (it is soooo much butter, I know) and then add the flour.

Use a whisk to constantly stir. Once the rue is done, slowly start adding your warmed half and half. Stir for about 5 minutes until it has a smooth consistency.

6. Add your cream mixture to the veggie mixture. Mix in your clams. Add your salt, pepper, onion powder, garlic salt, and a pinch of sugar to taste. Then, add just 2-3 dashes of sherry vinegar.

Note: If your soup is very thick and you want it thinner, this is where I would follow my advice above about substituting some of the cream for the clam juice. If you’ve already come to this step, you can continue to add clam juice or water to your consistency preference.

7. Top with a little of the bacon and chopped parsley. Serve with sourdough bread and enjoy!

Seriously, my favorite soup. And it is a pretty good rendition of Ivar’s clam chowder, if I do say so myself. I will probably make this at least once more with the changes I listed above before the season is over.

The Boyfriend Rates It:3.5

I didn’t grow up eating clam chowder. As a matter of fact, the first time I remember eating it was on my first trip to Seattle in 2011, so I probably am not the best judge of clam chowder. With that being said, thick and creamy and the bacon definitely gave it a pick me up. I believe that it could have used a little more flavor though. Maybe more seasoning or more some kind of veggie broth or something.


One Response to “New England Clam Chowder”


  1. Sky City Restaurant at the Space Needle « Mexicanese - January 20, 2013

    […] for their clam chowder (and a whole bunch of other chowder places because I am nuts for chowder), Pike Street, the gum wall, Deception Pass and kayaking, and a few other things…This time […]

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