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Clams and Flounder Chowder

2 dozen hard shell clams
1 quart water
2 garlic cloves
4 bay leaves, divided
½ cup butter
2 cups potatoes, peeled and cubed
2 celery stalks, chopped
3 bacon strips, cooked crisp
2 TBSP. fresh thyme, or ½ tsp. dried
1/3 cup flour
2 ounce bottle clam juice
½ tsp. sea salt
2 cups heavy cream
2 cups milk
4 lbs. flounder fillets, cut in 1-inch pieces

Wash and scrub clams well.
Bring water to a boil in a large soup pot and add clams.
Add the garlic and 2 bay leaves.
Cover and steam over medium heat for 5 to 10 minutes until the clams open.
Discard any that do not open.
Remove clams from shells, roughly chop and set aside.
Strain the broth through cheesecloth as an added precaution to remove any grit.
Save the broth.
Melt butter in the pot, saute potatoes, celery and onion for 5 minutes until well coated.
Add the bacon, thyme and remaining bay leaves.
Make a roux by sprinkling in flour and stirring until dissolved.
Add the reserved clam broth, bring to a boil, stirring constantly to avoid lumps.
Continue to simmer, stirring for 15 minutes, or until thickened.
Add the chopped clams, bottled clam juice and sea salt.
Pour in the cream and milk, cover and cook until heated through.
Add the fish fillets and continue to simmer another 5 minutes until the fish is opaque.
Season with salt and pepper.
Serve with oyster crackers or crusty bread.
Serves 6-8.

Coastal Fisherman Merch
CF Merch



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