Clam Chowder

4-5 dozen live clams
1 onion, diced
1/2 lb salt pork (or bacon)
1 cup whipping cream
1 bunch leeks, finely chopped
3 stalks celery, finely minced
2 carrots, diced
3 large potatoes, diced
1 cup fresh or canned corn kernels
handful of fresh parsley, chopped
pinch of thyme
2 bay leaves
pinch of nutmeg
2 T. flour
2 T. butter
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
1 T. Worcestershire sauce
dash of Tabasco

Cut salt pork into 1/2 inch dice. Cut onions into 1/4 inch dice. Brown pork slowly in a cast-iron skillet. Add onions and cook until golden. Wash clams, discarding any that are broken or gaping. Heat them slowly in a pan until they open. Discard any that don’t open. Save juice, after straining to remove any sand. Chop half of the clams coarsely, and leave the other half whole.

Put pork, onions, clam juice and 1 quart boiling water into a big pot. Add leeks, celery, carrots, corn, parsley, thyme, bay leaves, salt, pepper, and a dash of nutmeg. Let come to a vigorous boil.

Reduce to a simmer, and add 1 cup scalded whipping cream and the potatoes. Make a roux by browning 2 tbsp flour in the same amount of butter; make it creamy and smooth by adding broth from the chowder pot. Put all the clams into the pot. Simmer slowly, stirring often, until potatoes are just tender. Stir in the roux. Add Worcestershire sauce and a dash of Tabasco. Serve chowder sizzling hot!

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