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A Kinder, Gentler Clam Chowder

Every fall I joke about beating the rush and gaining weight before the holidays. Too bad that’s not really funny. Eating on the run and under stress often results in extra pounds and a craving for a truly delicious and nutritious meal. Sitting down to a relaxing meal that is both satisfying and wholesome becomes a low priority as we rush about. Here’s a soup that might become one of your favorite (guilt-free) comfort foods.

Clam Chowder with Turkey Bacon

(As featured in the Holiday 2013 issue of Taste Magazine  in “Simply Delicious” by Kathy Mathieu on page 20.)

Clam Chowder with Turkey bacon

Soup coming to a boil is pretty photogenic. (Excuse my very old, stained pot.)

  • 4 to 6 slices turkey bacon
  • 2 stalks celery, thinly sliced
  • 1 large carrot, thinly sliced
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 generous handfuls parsley leaves
  • 1 medium potato cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 28 ounces diced canned tomatoes
  • 1 8 ounce bottle clam juice
  • 2 6.5 ounce cans chopped or minced clams
  • 1 10 ounce can whole baby clams, drained and rinsed in cold water
  • ½ teaspoon dried thyme
  • ½ teaspoon dried basil
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons olive oil
Clam Chowder with Turkey Bacon

Serve with a salad and crusty bread – a classic meal.

Fry bacon in heavy pot until crisp. Drain on a paper towel and crumble.

Wipe out pot with a paper towel, if necessary, removing any grease but leaving brown bits stuck to bottom.

Cook celery, carrots and onions in olive oil in the same pot on medium heat until they begin to turn color.

Drain chopped clams, pouring juice into pot.

Add all ingredients except chopped clams and baby clams.

Bring soup to a boil and simmer covered, about 40 minutes.

Add clams and heat gently.

Taste alert: Fresh parsley makes this dish pop.

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