thai inspired clam chowder

November 12, 2012 § 2 Comments

i had previously made this recipe from bon appetit’s website (scrumptious) and then saw this recipe on pinterest. the recipe that i present to you today is born from my inability to follow the second recipe. as i was trying to make the clam chowder i got bored/annoyed and said fuck it and went with what was on hand and what was easiest (least amount of dishes used). the bonus about this recipe is that’s dairy free. it’s really rich, savory and scrumptious. on occasion getting impatient with a recipe has served me well! my thai inspired clam chowder has a secret ingredient that has no place in a thai recipe, but we’ll just role with it.

1 piece bacon, chopped (or 5, the choice is yours)

1 shallot diced

1 red bell pepper, chopped

2 cans coconut milk

2 tbs red thai curry paste (or more use your taste buds!)

1 box chicken stock (fish stock or veggie probably would have made more sense but this worked)

2lbs little neck clams, soaked and scrubbed (minced canned clams work too)

zest and juice of  1 lime

kaffir lime leaves (feel free to omit if this is not readily availble)

place diced bacon in a heavy bottom enameled pot, medium heat. cook the bacon until the fat is rendered. Add the shallot and red pepper sauté until soft and shallot is translucent, 5 minutes. add the cans of coconut milk and the broth. add the lime zest and juice and curry paste, stir to incorporate. bring the soup to a boil and then reduce to a simmer for 15 minutes. throw in kaffir leaves (if using).

clams clams clams. i did not grow up using clams they are not something i’m familiar with at all. i did a little bit of googling and this is what i found. let the clams sit in salt water for as long as you can before you’re ready to use them (between 1 hour and overnight, i did an hour).  clams tend to have a lot of sand inside them so the soak will help them spit out the sand. after the soak bath take the clams one by one and rinse them and scrub scrub them to make sure they’re clean and have no chips.

add the clams to the soup at the end right before you’re about to eat (they take 10 minutes to cook). i’ve read low and slow is the way to go. my clams weren’t really opening on low heat and i had the thought that they were all dead. i turned up the heat to medium low and they opened right up! that would have been quite depressing. soon as the clams open, serve it up. garnish with generous amounts of cilantro and an extra squeeze of lime. enjoy!

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