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As soon as this recipe was posted on Taste Food, I longed to make it. It just never seemed to work out though. I’d plan it out, make my grocery list and then the seafood counter would not have clams. I looked all over for celery root (used in the original recipe) and couldn’t find it anywhere, even places like Whole Foods. So instead of insisting that the recipe be exactly replicated, I bent the rules a bit. And you know what? That’s what cooking is all about. I don’t know if this chowder is as good as the original but we really enjoyed it.

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Clam Chowder (a variation of a recipe from Taste Food)

  • 1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 slices bacon, cut in 1/2-inch pieces
  • 1 large yellow onion, coarsely chopped
  • 1 medium white turnip, peeled, cut in 1/2-inch dice
  • 1 pound small fingerling potatoes, cut in 1/4-inch coins
  • 2 celery stalks, diced
  • 1 1/2 cups whole milk
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup chicken stock
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 3 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 24 little neck clams
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Heat oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add bacon and fry until the bacon is lightly browned. Add onion and sauté until softened, about 2 minutes. Add turnip, potatoes, and celery. Sauté until soften, about 3 minutes.  Add milk, cream, stock, bay leaf and thyme. Bring to a boil. Add clams. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover and cook until clams open, stirring occasionally, 8 to 10 minutes. Discard any unopened clams. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve garnished with celery leaves.

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