Lesson 1010 – New England Clam Chowder

On Friday I went to our local Savers with my daughters and I picked up two interesting cookbooks (one was even signed by the author, how lucky was that!) In looking through them later that evening, I decided to try my hand at making New England clam chowder for our Saturday dinner, I had never made it before, but the recipe certainly didn’t look very difficult.

Personal note: I am a New Englander, tomatoes just DO NOT belong in clam chowder.

I, more or less followed the recipe, doubling it and adding a little more of this and that. I also added a good glug of olive oil at the end which is something I do to most of my soups and stews.

Oh, and I also added (several) glugs of sherry at the end. In my opinion, clam chowder just ‘ain’t clam chowder without the sherry.

The kids loved it, going back for seconds (and thirds) and leaving nothing in the pot for lunch the next day. There are requests from the gang to make this again (and again.) Yup, it was a hit.

Here’s the recipe, note that I doubled everything (except the bell pepper but it was a large one.) I’m not too keen on bell peppers in food but it worked well in this recipe and I wouldn’t leave it out or reduce it.


New England Clam Chowder (from Reader’s Digest’s Eat Well Stay Well)
Prep Time 15 minutes/ Cook time 25

  • 2 ounces of bacon, finely chopped (used the entire package but remember, I doubled everything)
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper, cut into ½ inch squares (cut it up even finer)
  • ¾ pound all-purpose potatoes, peeled and cut into ½ inch chunks (added more potatoes)
  • 1 cup bottled clam juice or chicken broth (used a box of chicken broth)
  • ¼ teaspoon dried rosemary
  • 1 cup low-fat milk (used whole milk)
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 1 cup frozen corn kernels
  • 1 cup shucked clams coarsely chopped (I used 2 cans of chopped clams with their juice)

1. In a large saucepan, cook the bacon with 2 tablespoons of water over low heat for 3 minutes or until bacon has rendered its fat and is lightly crisped. Add the onion and bell pepper and cook, stirring frequently, for 5 minutes or until the onion is soft. Add the potatoes, tossing to coat.
2. Stir in the clam juice or chicken broth, 1 ¼ cups of water, black pepper, salt, rosemary, and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer, cover and cook for 10 minutes until potatoes are tender.
3. In a small bowl, whisk the milk into the flour until well combined. Stir into the saucepan along with the corn and clams, and cook, stirring frequently, for 5 minutes or until the soup is lightly thickened and the clams are cooked through.

We served this with warm crusty bread and a salad. Enjoy.


Wendy Thomas writes about the lessons learned while raising children and chickens in New Hampshire. Contact her at Wendy@SimpleThrift.com

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Filed under Backyard Chickens, chicken care, Chicks, Holidays, Inspiration, Life Lessons, Personal, Quotable Chicks, The Family

6 responses to “Lesson 1010 – New England Clam Chowder

  1. Thank you for your comment about the tomatoes and chowder. My boyfriend is originally from Pennsylvania and told me he was making me a clam dinner. When I got home, he showed me this tomato based sauce with clams in it. I asked him what planet he was from. I couldn’t eat it.

    Of course he was also shocked when I told him I was making a boiled dinner and I pulled out the corned beef instead of a ham. “You boil ham in Pennsylvania?” I asked. He IS from another planet.

  2. Looks delicious!!! Definitely going to try this recipe!!!

  3. I love the little red (bacon?) heart in your chowder showing it wsa made with love. Bottom left of pot.

    • Wendy Thomas

      wow! you’re right, a little, tiny red pepper heart. This was made with love.

      Thanks for pointing that out.


      On Tue, Apr 22, 2014 at 4:20 PM, Lessons Learned from the Flock wrote:


  4. Growing up in NY we only had one kind of clam chowder and it wasn’t white. We also didn’t boil corned beef, or ham for that matter, We did, however, cut our hot dog buns on the top like you’re supposed to.

  5. Alyssa Maston

    Mmm this sounds so good….let me know when you make it next, I’ll be there!

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