January 9 2016

New England Clam & Spam Chowder

Happy New Year to everyone and let’s make 2016 a great year by eating more FISH. The predicted foodie trends for this coming year are not what I expected. Seaweed, sauerkrauts & pickled cabbages, chili pastes, ice cream sandwiches, vegetables over proteins, and Spam. Yes, Spam. This month’s recipe is a twist on New England clam chowder introducing Spam in the recipe. Bon Appetite.

                   New England Clam & Spam Chowder
Serves 6
8 strips – Bacon (minced)
½ cup – onion (diced)
½ cup – celery (diced)
½ cup – leeks white part only (diced)
1TB.- fresh garlic (minced)
¼ cup – flour
4 oz. – cream cheese (room temperature)
2 oz. – White wine
2 cups – warm clam or chicken stock
Salt & fresh ground white pepper
1 tsp. – dry thyme leaf
1 – Bay leaf
4 dashes Worcestershire sauce
4 dashes hot sauce
2 cups – heavy whipping cream
2 cups – potatoes diced (par cooked)
2 can’s – chopped clams
1 / 2can – spam (diced and sautéed until browned)
  1. In a 3 quart sauce pot, sauté bacon until browned and all fat has melted.
  2. Add all the vegetables and season with salt and pepper. Cook until just sweated.
  3. Add flour to make a roux with the bacon fat. Turn heat to low.
  4. Add the soft cream cheese and blend into the mixture.
  5. Add the wine, clam stock, and all the spices stirring well as the soup should start to thicken. Once soup has started to simmer and will no longer thicken, add the cream and cook a few more minutes.
  6. Add the potatoes, clams, and spam.
  7. Cook   a few more minutes and adjust seasoning if necessary. Pull off stove and let rest.
  8. You can serve right away, but I suggest making one day ahead to allow all the flavors, the smoke from the bacon, and the spam to infuse.