Clam Chowder with Garlic Bread
Soup season is upon us and you are going to want to make this recipe for the most delicious clam chowder ever! This clam chowder is so rich and full of flavour, built up over live-fire starting with tasty bacon, grilled vegetables on the plancha and beautiful fresh clams. Served with crispy leeks and garlic bread made from lemon, garlic and thyme compound butter, this easy clam chowder with garlic bread recipe will be your go-to soup recipe this season.
1 large carrot
3 stalks Celery
2 tbsp fresh chopped thyme, divided
5-6 slices thick-cut bacon
4 cups Chicken stock
3 cups heavy Cream
2.4 lbs Clams
½ cup Clam juice
1/2 cup butter, divided
1 clove garlic
1 Lemon, juice + zest
fresh dill for garnish
Canola oil for frying
Finely chop the carrots and celery and add to a bowl. Thinly slice the leek into rounds, but leave about 3-4 inches of the white part to thinly slice into matchsticks.
Place the rounds of leek into the bowl with the carrots and celery and the matchsticks into a separate bowl and coat with 1-2 tbsp flour. Set aside.
Add the carrots, celery and leeks to the planca with oil and allow to cook and soften.
Dice the bacon. Place a cast iron pot on the elevated grill rack over the centre fire and once hot, add the bacon. Cook, stirring occasionally until fat is rendered and bacon is lightly browned.
Add the vegetables from the plancha to the pot and mix. Add ¼ cup butter and mix. Sprinkle in the flour 2-3 tbsp at a time and mix, until incorporated. Add in the clam juice. Mix. Add in the cream and mix. Add in the stock. Mix and cover. Allow to simmer for about two hours, stirring occasionally and season with salt and pepper.
Meanwhile, place a small cast iron pan on plancha with canola oil. Fry the leeks until crispy. Remove from oil once done and place in a bowl and salt.
Finely chop the thyme and place in a bowl. Grate in garlic and lemon zest and add remaining butter. Mix. Season with salt and pepper and mix. Slice a piece of bread and butter on both sides. Add to the plancha and toast on both sides until golden.
Around the last 15 minutes of your cook, add the clams to the chowder. Cover and cook until clams are opened. Once clams are fully cooked, remove from the pot and transfer into your serving bowl(s). Ladle in the chowder broth and squeeze the juice from half a lemon over top. Season with pepper, fresh chopped dill the crispy leeks and serve with the garlic bread.