Manhattan Clam Chowder

My cousin came out to Maryland to visit my parents, along with a ton of other family members.  He is a  pescitarian (a person who follows a vegetarian diet with the exception of fish and all other seafoods.) So we decided to have dual clam chowders. This healthier recipe we chose to make to help counter its creamy counterpart, New England Clam Chowder.  This dish actually originated in Rhode Island from Portuguese immigrants who added tomatoes to their chowder.  It is also known as New York Clam Chowder, but the Portuguese found this as an insult, so Manhattan it was! 



  • 4 bacon slices, cut into 1/2-inch squares 
  • 1 small chopped onion
  • 2 stalks diced (1/3 inch) celery
  • 3 small potatoes, diced (1/3 inch) peeled boiling potato (I used 2 large)
  • 2 (8-oz) bottle clam juice (If you need more liquid, use water or vegetable broth)
  • 2 cups canned diced tomatoes (8 oz), including juice
  • 1 1/2 dozen small hard-shelled clams (1 1/2 to 2 inches in diameter; 2 pounds total), scrubbed well – I also used some pre-shucked clams to save the labor
  • 4 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 4 sprigs fresh thyme, chopped
  • Salt and pepper, to taste


Cook bacon in a 2- to 3-quart saucepan over medium heat, until lightly crispy. 

Reduce heat to medium low, then add onion, and celery and cook, stirring, until softened, about 5 minutes. 


Stir in potato, bottled clam juice, and tomatoes (with juice.) Bring to a boil, then simmer, covered, 10 minutes (potatoes should be mostly done.) 


Stir in clams and simmer, covered, stirring occasionally, until clams open wide, 8 to 10 minutes. (Discard any clams that after 10 minutes have not opened.) 
Remove pan from heat.
Remove most of clamshells with tongs, then detach clams and return them to chowder. (Keep a few in their shells for garnish.) Stir in parsley and thyme. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Dad and Mom in Maryland – After they ate both soups = Big Smiles!

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