Coast to Coast Clam Chowder

cuisine American
difficulty moderate
season fall
serves 8

Ingredients

1 quart whole milk 1 pint half and half 2 medium Yukon Gold potatoes, medium diced Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper 4 tablespoons4 tablespoons butter 1/2 pound thick-sliced apple-smoked bacon, diced 3 cloves garlic, chopped 2 tablespoons2 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme 2 bay leaves 2 medium onions, diced 1 medium leek, diced 1 bunch organic celery, medium diced 1/2 cup all-purpose flour 24 ounces clam juice 3 pounds razor clams, scrubbed and rinsed to remove debris and sand 24 little neck clams, scrubbed and rinsed to remove debris and sand 1 1/2 tablespoons1 1/2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce 2 teaspoons2 teaspoons Tabasco sauce TRUFFLE OIL

Directions

  1. Place milk, heavy cream, potatoes, and one teaspoon of salt in a saucepan and bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring frequently. Reduce heat and simmer until potatoes are cooked through, about 20 minutes.
  2. In a large heavy-gauge soup pot, melt butter over medium heat, then add bacon and cook until crispy. Add garlic and cook until blonde. Toss in thyme and bay leaves and cook, stirring, for another minute. Add onions, leeks, and celery, and cook until tender, about 5 minutes.
  3. Sprinkle the flour and 2 teaspoons salt over the vegetable and stir to incorporate. Add clam juice and bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Lower the heat to low and add the cream-milk mixture.
  4. Place the razor clams in a wide bottomed pot, cover with 1" cold water and bring to a boil. Cover, turn off the heat, and steam the clams for 3 minutes. Discard any unopened clams. Remove the meat from the shells, cut off the visceral sac (all the dark muddy bits) and squeeze the digger foot--if a long clear crystalline rod is present, remove it. Chop the meat into 1/2" pieces.
  5. Place the littleneck clams in a WIDE BOTTOMED POT, cover with 1" cold water and bring to a boil. Cover, turn off the heat, and steam the clams for 3 minutes. Discard any unopened clams. Remove the meat from the shells.
  6. Stir the razor and littleneck clams into the chowder.
  7. Add the Worcestershire and tabasco sauce and stir to combine. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  8. Divide among bowls, drizzle with truffle oil, and serve immediately.