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My friend Marcia found this clam chowder recipe years and years ago, under the title "My Favorite Clam Chowder." I couldn't find another recipe on 'Zaar that duplicated it, so here it is. We made it tonight, and it was fabulous! I'm posting the recipe as Marcia gave it to me, but I tweaked it when I made it -- I used two cups of fat-free evaporated skim milk and one cup of half-and-half. I also used three 6.5-oz. cans of minced clams, but I probably could have used four ... and will, the next time I make it. Enjoy!
- Strain the clams, reserving the liquid. Set aside. (Again, feel free to use three or four cans; if you do, and you like a thicker chowder, only use liquid from two of the cans.).
- Saute the onion in bacon grease until lightly browned. Set crumbled bacon and onion aside.
- Simmer potatoes and carrots in boiling water until tender and potatoes fall apart (could be 10-15 minutes, depending on how high your heat is).
- Add reserved clam liquid (but not clams), bacon, onion, and salt and pepper to taste. Simmer for another five minutes or so.
- Add half-and-half. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low.
- Add canned clams and heat through.
- Add thyme and, if necessary, additional salt and pepper.
- Serve immediately, with good French bread (try a Clear Flour baguette if you live in the Boston area).