Maine Clam Chowder

Course : Chowders
Serves: 6
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4 dozen small clams
3 slices salt pork or bacon -- diced fine
1 1/2 cups water
4 large potatoes -- peeled and diced small
1 1/2 large onion -- (more or less), peeled and diced small
6 cups milk or half cream
1 dash thyme -- fresh is best
1 dash salt and pepper to taste

Preparation / Directions:

Scrub the clams under cold running water with a stiff brush to remove all the grit. Place water in a large stock pot and bring to a boil. Cook the clams in batches of about 1 dozen for 5 minutes or so until the shells open. Discard any clams that fail to open. Reserve the cooking liquid. As soon as the clams are cool enough to handle remove from the shells saving all liquids. Place the meat in a seperate bowl. Strain the cooking liquid through 2 layers of cheesecloth, set aside. You should have 4 to 5 cups of liquid. Chop the clams, set aside. In a large heavy dutch oven fry the salt pork or bacon until crisp, stirring often, over medium heat. Add onions and cook just until opaque. Add clam broth and bring to a rolling boil. Cook for 5 minutes. Add potatoes, return to a boil and cook until the potatoes are very tender but not falling apart. 10 to 15 minutes approximately. Add thyme, clams and milk, continue to cook over a very low heat until heated through. Be very careful not to let it boil as it will curd le very easily. Add salt and pepper to taste. Serve Hot. For the best flavor make this early in the day and let set. Reheat slowly to serve


Nutritional Information:

128 Calories (kcal); 1g Total Fat; (5% calories from fat); 11g Protein; 19g Carbohydrate; 24mg Cholesterol; 48mg Sodium

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