The church we attended in Shoreline had age group social groups. The younger folk, perhaps newly married with no children, the FIP (family-in-production) group, the WATTGWNCH (worrying-about-teenagers-thank-goodness-we’re-not-changing-diapers) group and the BTDTGTBOASTRBTTHWTGCCWHAFSC (been-there-done-that-glad-to-babysit-occasionally-and-spoil-them-rotten-but-take-them-home-when-they-get-cranky-cuz-we-have-a-full-social-calendar) group.
We were in the FIP group and on our calendar was a potluck at the vacation home of one of the BTDTGTBOASTRBTTHWTGCCWHAFSC group. It’s a lovely cabin on the Puget Sound waterfront. When I say cabin, don’t think logs with an outhouse. There are people who would kill to live in it, even without the very prime location. One of the ladies, JT, brought a crock pot of clam chowder. One spoonful and I knew this was a recipe I had to have. She told me she had gotten it from a restaurant in California, known for this very soup. When the lines got long enough, the staff would bring out small sample cups for the patient patrons. Oh yeah, it was worth the wait.
When I got the recipe, I was so excited to try it out on my kids, knowing they would instantly fall in love. The looks on their faces could have curdled milk. No mom, that would not happen. We hate clams.
So, as mothers do when faced with a challenge, I succumbed to their petulant pouts and altered the recipe. Corn and no clams. It was a-mazing! They loved it. It’s one of the “hey mom, do you think we could have [x] for dinner sometime” staple requests.
I would like to say they have learned to like clams, but that would be a lie. Instead we enjoy the soup for what it is – really good and great for the regularity too. Try it with a loaf of crusty bread. You will be sated and all warm inside.
Corn (or clam) chowder
- 1 carrot, shredded
- 1 medium onion, diced
- 4 potatoes, diced
- 1 stalk celery, chopped
- 1 pound bacon, minced
- [1 pint clam juice]
- 1 1/2 cups flour
- 2 cups milk
- 2 cups half and half
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tsp black pepper
- salt to taste
- [1/2 pound clams]
Cook bacon in 5 qt pan till almost done. Add vegetables and saute till tender. Add flour to make a roux, cook for 2 minutes. Allow to cool. Add [clam juice] and dairy products, stirring with a wire whisk until smooth. Add garlic, pepper and [clams]. Cook over low heat, stirring occasionally. Cook for 2 hours or until desired thickness.
Corn chowder: increase milk by 1 pint, eleminate clam juice and clams. Add corn in desired amount.