I originally started this blog as a place to store tried and true recipes for my family. It didn't take long to discover how supportive and fun the blog community was and I became hooked! I rarely create my own recipes, but I still hope you'll enjoy the recipes that I find and tweak a bit.
When I was about twenty-three I took a week long trip to San Francisco. I immediately fell in love with that glorious part of our country. The wharf, the trolleys, the funky winding roads, I couldn't get enough. And of course, one thing I got plenty of, besides truckloads of Ghirardelli chocolate, was lots of creamy clam chowder. Sitting in an outside cafe, right next to the water and a slab of barking seals, eating fresh clam chowder out of a sour dough bread bowl was about as close to heaven as it's going to get for me!
And while this isn't being eaten out of a homemade sour dough bowl, it's still pretty delicious and definitely reminds me of my blissful week in the Bay Area. A rich, creamy, chowder chock full of all you love about clam chowder, with less calories. Bacon, potatoes, lots of clams, and a thick broth, which has a slight and delightful sweetness thanks to the white wine.
For the bread bowl, since I just didn't have it in me to bake me own, I just hollowed out a store bought kaiser roll. It actually held up very nicely and made the perfect amount to feel warm and satisfied. My kids also thought being served out of a roll was the coolest thing ever!
Adapted from The New Way to Cook Light
1 1/2 cups chopped onion, divided
1/2 cup unoaked chardonnay (I used white wine)
1 (8 oz) bottle clam juice
1 bay leaf
1 tablespoon butter
1 slice bacon, chopped
3 cups diced red potato
1/2 cup chopped celery
1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper
3 tablespoons all purpose flour
1/3 cup water
3/4 cup half and half (I used fat-free)
3/4 cup reduced fat milk
2 cans chopped clams
2 tablespoons chopped chives
1 teaspoon chopped thyme
1. Combine 1/2 cup onion, wine, and next 2 ingredients (through bay leaf) in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat; bring to a boil. Cover and cook 2 minutes; strain through a cheesecloth-lined sieve over a bowl, reserving cooking liquid.
2. Wipe pan clean. Melt butter in pan. Add bacon to pan; saute 3 minutes. Stir in remaining 1 cup onion, potato, celery and red pepper; saute 4 minutes. Stir in flour; cook 1 minute. Stir in cooking liquid and 1/3 cup water; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in clams, half-and-half and milk; cook 1 minute or until heated. Stir in herbs.