Over the past year, I have had a number of people ask me to create a recipe for Manhattan Clam Chowder. So, I did a sort of take on my New England Clam Chowder. You have no idea how difficult it was not to add heavy whipping cream.
This Manhattan Clam Chowder is so full of flavor. Honestly, it is rather easy to make. I suggest getting your mise en place in place prior to cooking. Is that redundant? So, cut your vegetables, soak your clams and open up all of the other ingredients. In the Charlotte area? Head on over to The Carolina Meat & Fish Co. and grab a few dozen little neck clams.
In my opinion, you can never have enough clams. Because of this, I use both fresh and canned. If you so desire, you can definitely use all fresh clams and just remove from the shell once they open. Littleneck clams are great because there is no need to chop them. You can also use chowder clams. Just be sure to chop them up after they open.
HOW TO PREPARE MANHATTAN CLAM CHOWDER
Heat up a heavy bottom pot to medium. I use an enameled cast iron pot like this one. Place bacon pieces in pot and start to render. While bacon is rendering, soak the littleneck clams in a bowl with water and about two tablespoons of flour. The clams will ingest the flour and spit it out along with any dirt/grit. Let them soak for about five minutes. Rinse and set back in fridge. Click here to read all about the appropriate way to clean clams.
When the bacon is almost fully-cooked, add in the celery, carrots, and onion. Stir and allow to soften about five minutes. Mix in the garlic and cook another minute or so, stirring occasionally. Pour in the white wine and scrape up any browned bits on the bottom. Allow the alcohol to cook off. This will take about four to five minutes.
Add in the chopped tomatoes, bottle of clam juice, and the juice from the canned clams. Mix well.
Stir in about three cups of the chicken broth. Toss in the bay leaves, the thyme leaves and thyme bundle (I just wrap a few sprigs of thyme in a thyme stem). Season with kosher salt, black pepper and a few dashes of crushed red pepper flakes.
Allow to simmer on medium-high for about ten minutes. Add in the potatoes and bring to a simmer/low boil. It will take about ten to fifteen additional minutes for the potatoes to soften. Taste about halfway through to see if you need to add additional salt. The potatoes need salt!
You may notice that with the addition of the potatoes, you may need to add the last cup of chicken broth. I used all four cups. Do that now so that it can heat up before you steam the clams. Add in the fresh clams. Place lid on pot and allow to steam open. This will take about five minutes, or so. For any clams that refuse to open, remove from pot and discard. Stir in the chopped clams and fresh chopped parsley.
TO FINISH AND SERVE THE MANHATTAN CLAM CHOWDER
Turn off the heat and allow the canned clams to warm in the chowder for a few minutes. Remove the bay leaves. Always count the number of bay leaves you put in. Be sure to take the same amount out. You do NOT want someone biting into one of these guys! Remove the thyme bundle. Discard.
Serve the Manhattan Clam Chowder in big bowls. Garnish each bowl with more fresh chopped parsley. Serve with fresh bread and/or oyster crackers. For a dash of heat, add a few drops of Tabasco! ENJOY!
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I am more than just recipes. I love fashion and style too! Most importantly, I love my Family (my Hubby and my Fur Babies). My Husband (aka my “Kitchen Bitch”) means the world to me. He’s pretty damn cool too. Not only is he one of the nicest guys you will ever meet, he also has had a lengthy career in professional hockey. Not only winning two Stanley Cups with the Pittsburgh Penguins in the early ’90’s, but most recently winning the Calder Cup with the Charlotte Checkers, amongst many other accolades. If you live in Charlotte and play hockey, or have a family member who plays, be sure to contact him. He is known as one of the best skate sharpeners in the world!
Our life has changed dramatically in the past few years with the passing of our two goldendoodles, Vegas and Viva. We were lucky enough to have Vegas for five years (totally wish it was longer). Most recently, losing our Viva to a brain tumor in July of 2020. We welcomed our mini goldendoodle 7, almost seven years ago. We just added the amazing Hazel! Of course, I am always posting tons and tons of photos! Be sure to check out my recipe for Pet Bone Broth! This broth is super rich in nutrients and will provide your pet with a multitude of health benefits!
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