How was everyone's Thanksgiving? We had a wonderful time with friends this year, lots of food, and I'm still full! Now it's Monday and back to the grind, but luckily not for too long.
A few weeks ago Sara, Alissa and I got together again for another bloggy friend lunch. It's such a great way to explore new recipes and try new things, and of course, the company's not bad either! For our appetizer, Sara made these wonderful lettuce wraps that taste very similar to those of PF Chang's, delicious, keep your eye out for those!
And for the main course I made clam chowder. I made clam chowder for two reasons, one, I love it, and don't eat it often since it's not exactly diet friendly. Two, my husband does not like it, so I needed to take advantage of the opportunity to make it without hearing an hour's worth of belly-achin, hee hee! The recipe I found on food network is absolutely fool proof and SOO delicious. It only takes about a half hour to make too. I served the chowder in bread bowls. If you're going to serve soup in bread bowls, I strongly suggest that you serve a very thick chowder or chili, otherwise you'll probably have a very messy problem on your hands. The bread bowls were also very quick and easy to make. The only problem I had was getting the bottoms to brown completely, and eventually I just flipped them over to get the bottoms crispy and stable. When hollowing out the bowl, just take care not to take out too much center, otherwise it won't be able to hold up to the soup. But oh my gosh, it's so good. I loved scraping the bowl as I ate the soup to get a bit of both in every bite, it's the most filling thing you'll ever eat. Give this a try, you'll be surprised how easy it really is to make!
By Union Oyster House
Ingredients (I halved this for three people and still had a LOT leftover)
2 pounds potatoes, peeled and diced
4 pounds fresh or frozen clams, shelled and diced (I used canned clams, it was delish)
1/4 pound salt pork, diced (I used bacon...oh yeah)
2 small onions, diced
1 cup butter
1 cup flour
10 cups clam juice
2 pints half-and-half
Salt and pepper
Dash hot pepper sauce
Dash Worcestershire sauce
Bring the potatoes and the clam juice to the boil. Cook until the potatoes are tender, about 10 to 15 minutes. Add the clams and any of their liquid. Cook about 5 minutes. Set aside.
Add the pork to a saute pan and cook over low heat until rendered. Add the onions and cook until transparent. Add the butter and allow it to melt. Add the flour and cook until slightly colored. Add a bit more flour if necessary if the mixture is too soft. Bring the clams, juice and potatoes back to the boil. Gradually stir in the cooked roux. Bring to a rolling boil to thicken. Stir continuously while cooking. Beat the half and half and add to the soup. It may not be necessary to use all the half-and-half; the soup should be thick. Adjust the seasoning and add a dash of hot pepper sauce and Worcestershire sauce before serving
Found in Allrecipes.com
2 (.25 ounce) packages active dry yeast
1 cup warm water (110 degrees to 115
1 cup warm milk (110 to 115 degrees F)
1/2 cup shortening 1/2 cup sugar
2 teaspoons salt
6 cups all-purpose flour
1. In a mixing bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water. Add the milk, shortening, sugar, eggs, salt and 2 cups flour. Beat until smooth. Stir in enough remaining flour to form a soft dough. Turn onto a floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic, about 6-8 minutes. Place in a greased bowl, turning once to grease top. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 hour.
2. Punch dough down. Turn onto a lightly floured surface. Divide into eight pieces; shape each into a ball. Grease two baking sheets and sprinkle with cornmeal. Place four balls 3 in. apart on each prepared pan. Cover and let rise until doubled, about 30 minutes. Bake at 350 degrees F for 20-25 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from pans to wire racks to cool.
3. For bread bowls, cut a thin slice off the top of bread. Hollow out bottom half, leaving a 1/4-in. shell (discard removed bread or save for another use). Fill with chili, chowder or stew.
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