New England Clam Chowder
- Drain the juice from the clams and reserve. You should have 6 cups between the clam juice and the juice from the clams. If you don’t, add water to make up the difference.
- In a large heavy gauge pot cook the bacon until fat is rendered (don’t cook until the bacon is crisp. It should be tender.)
- Add the butter, onions and cook until softened, about 5 minutes.
- Add the flour and continue to stir, cooking for 2 minutes. Be careful not to let brown.
- Add the and celery, garlic, thyme and bay leaves.
- Add the potatoes and clam broth, and bring to a boil. Lower the heat, cover, and simmer for 20 to 30 minutes, or until the broth thickens slightly and the potatoes are very tender.
- Remove from the heat, stir in clams and heavy cream and season with pepper and salt, if necessary.
For best flavor, make the soup the day ahead and serve with crackers.