manhattan clam chowder

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This turned out to be the perfect, hearty yet healthy soup for our recent soup supper. I made a loaf of fresh tomato bread to go with it and it was amazing. The addition of bacon in this recipe adds a smoky depth to this dish, and the lemons make it exceptionally bright without being too tart. It really brings out the flavors of the fresh veggies and clams.

1/2 lb. bacon

3 medium potatoes (any type) unpeeled and cut into bite size chunks

1 large onion, chopped

1 large green bell pepper, seeded and chopped

2 sticks celery + some green tops, chopped

3 large carrots, peeled and finely chopped

2 large cloves garlic, minced

2/3 cup dry white wine (such as sauvignon blanc)

4 cups homemade fish/seafood stock (or store bought)

2 (14 oz.) cans fire roasted, petite diced tomatoes

2 (6 oz.) cans tomato paste

3 (10 oz.) cans baby clams + juice

juice of 1 large lemon

1 teaspoon Tony Chachere’s Cajun seasoning (or Lawry’s seasoned salt)

1 teaspoon dry oregano

1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes

black pepper to taste

chopped, fresh parsley (garnish)

sliced, fresh grape tomatoes (garnish)

Brown the bacon in a large, heavy Dutch oven. Cook until not quite crispy. Remove bacon from pot and set aside on paper towel-lined plate to drain. If you’re using a lean type of bacon you may find that you hardly have any drippings in the bottom of the Dutch oven at this point. You want a few Tablespoons. If you have way more than that, remove some. If you don’t have enough drippings, add some olive oil to the pot to measure approximately 3 Tablespoons. Heat drippings/oil. Once hot, add the potatoes, onion, bell pepper, celery and carrots to the pot. Saute until veggies are tender and slightly golden (approximately 10 minutes.) Add garlic during last minute of saute time and cook until fragrant. Deglaze pot with the white wine, scraping up any brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Add stock, tomatoes, tomato paste, clams, seasonings and lemon juice. Chop up bacon. Add bacon back to the pot and cook soup, stirring frequently, until completely heated through. Ladle hot soup into bowls and serve with your choice of garnishes and well buttered, crusty, fresh bread! Yum!



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