Monday, December 6, 2010

Celebration Chowder

Today is Hubby's birthday, and Princess Bossy arrives home for 2 weeks...YAY!!  She has already promised her dad a carrot cake cheesecake for dessert, so I asked for his dinner wish.  He chose seafood chowder and French bread with the garlic-mayo-Parmesan topping we haven't had in ages.  The bread recipe was given to me years ago by my friend, Kai.

Seafood Chowder
(Makes approximately 5 quarts)
1/2 - 1 lb bacon, minced and cooked crisp in large pot or Dutch oven (or cooked crisp in strips, then crumbled) 
Set bacon aside for later.
Using the pan in which the bacon was cooked, with all but a couple tablespoons of the fat poured off, saute the following, all of which has been chopped fine by hand or in the food processor.  (I used to make my chowder very chunky, but found that the restaurant chowders we liked had tinier pieces, so that you got a taste of everything in every bite. This also makes the chowder naturally thicker.):
1 medium sweet onion
4 carrots
3 stalks celery
3 cloves garlic
Because they don't need as much cooking, add after about 5 minutes:
6  medium potatoes, also finely chopped (Yukon Gold, Red, or Russet) 6 cups Clam broth (Chicken or a combo of chicken and clam works, too)
After another 5 to 10 minutes, add: 
2 cups or 1 lb minced clams
2 cups or 1 lb small shrimp
2 cups or 1 lb scallops, pan seared and chopped
previously cooked bacon
6 cups clam or chicken broth
3 12 oz cans evaporated milk (or 4 1/2 cups milk or half and half)
black pepper, to taste (broths and seafood are usually salty enough, so be sure to taste before adding salt)
2 dashes Cayenne pepper, optional (we like a little zip to almost everything)
Simmer slowly for an hour.  Add:
1 cup corn, fresh, canned, or frozen
and, if necessary to thicken, mix in 
1/4 cup cornstarch dissolved in 1/2 cup cold water
Simmer until thickened and heated through...about 10 - 20 more minutes.  Serve.
Parmesan French Bread
Preheat oven to 450 degrees, convection or bake, or preheat the broiler
1 large loaf of French Bread, cut horizontally/lengthwise (so you have the top separate from the bottom)
Spread the cut side of each piece with a generous layer of
Mayonnaise mixed with minced garlic or garlic powder, to taste
Sprinkle on a layer of
Parmesan cheese, shredded
Place on baking sheets and bake or broil until hot and the cheese starts to turn a golden brown...Maybe 5 - 10 minutes, depending on your oven and the method chosen.
Remove from oven and let cool for about 5 minutes.  Slice crosswise in 2 inch pieces to serve.


  1. I'm a sucker for chowder and garlic bread. I must try!

  2. I haven't made chowder in years; I guess I've just forgotten about it. We always enjoy it when I do make it. Your recipe sounds delectable!


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