What does any good New Englander do while cheering on their Pats? Make some chowdah of course.
Yesterday, I picked up some fresh clams and other seafood selections at Lombardi’s. I spent hours the internet scouring for the perfect recipe, but my Facebook newsfeed revealed that my friend Andrea’s husband James just cooked up some.
On a break during the third quarter of the Cowboys/Patriots game, I gave James a ring and scribbled down these notes, which has been used as the basis for the recipe below.
New England Chowdah
- 1 12 oz package of salt pork
- 1 large chopped yellow onion
- 3 cloves minced garlic
- 2 cubed Idaho potatoes
- 2 quarts fish stock – (You can buy or make)
- 4 tbsp softened butter
- 6 tbsp all purpose flour
- A dozen or two small neck clams (optional)
- 1 51 oz. can of minced clams
- 1 quart half and half
- 2 tbsp dried parsley
- 1/2 tsp chipotle pepper
First, if you are using fresh clams. Rinse and clean the clams and put in a bowl of water in your fridge for 30 minutes to release any grit.
Render the salt pork over medium-low in your large pot.
Put the salt pork to the side so it cools. Add the chopped onion to the pork fat and cook until translucent. Add garlic and cook until fragrant and softened.
If you are using fresh clams, strain them and put them in a covered pot of water on medium to steam for 10 minutes.
Season with alt, pepper, parsley, chopped salt pork (only the strips with meat) and chipotle pepper. Allow this to cook for at least 15 minutes.
Keep in mind the pieces of fat can be rendered once more if desired for another recipe. I used them to cook some scallops.