Today's weather forecast is a mix of warm creamy chowder with some fresh corn and smoked bacon bits.

Get ready for the 20th annual Chowder Fest going down at the Saratoga City Center February 3rd from 11am until 4pm. With over 80 vendors to select your choice of chow chow from you wont be disappointed.

My favorite chowder of all chowders would have to be clam chowder, I mean I feel like it kinda it the originator of all the other spin offs. Although I have tried a few various ones still clam chowder will remain number 1 in my books.

Here is a quick little recipe from my favorite chowder

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Ingredients

    • 3 8-ounce bottles clam juice
    • 1 pound russet potatoes, peeled, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
    • 2 tablespoons (1/4 stick) butter
    • 3 slices bacon, finely chopped
    • 2 cups chopped onions
    • 1 1/4 cups chopped celery with leaves (about 2 large stalks)
    • 2 garlic cloves, chopped
    • 1 bay leaf
    • 1/4 cup all purpose flour
    • 6 6 1/2-ounce cans chopped clams, drained, juices reserved
    • 1 1/4 cups half and half
    • 1 teaspoon hot pepper sauce

Preparation

    1. Bring bottled clam juice and potatoes to boil in heavy large saucepan over high heat. Reduce heat to medium-low; cover and simmer until potatoes are tender, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat.
    2. Melt butter in heavy large pot over medium heat. Add bacon and cook until bacon begins to brown, about 8 minutes. Add onions, celery, garlic and bay leaf and sauté until vegetables soften, about 6 minutes. Stir in flour and cook 2 minutes (do not allow flour to brown). Gradually whisk in reserved juices from clams. Add potato mixture, clams, half and half and hot pepper sauce. Simmer chowder 5 minutes to blend flavors, stirring frequently. Season to taste with salt and pepper. (Can be prepared 1 day ahead. Refrigerate uncovered until cold, then cover and keep refrigerated. Bring to simmer before serving.)