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Seafood Chowder. It's SOUPER good.

Photo credit: Blue Yonder

Seafood Chowder is absolutely delicious and perfect for today's weather. When it comes to wine pairing, a dry Riesling or Viognier is a nice alternative to the typical choice of a Chardonnay.

Flavorful and slightly sweet; a Viognier is bit more like Riesling than a Chardonnay. The extra sweetness really matches well with this heavy dish. I recommend pouring local. We suggest Bebop Riesling Columbia Valley) from Nodland Cellars or Alexander Nicole Viognier (Columbia Valley)
                                         
This recipe takes some time to prepare, but is well worth the effort. We make large batches and freeze it. Serve with freshly baked crusty bagette bread. Locally bake bread is available at The Rocket Market or Central Food.

Ingredients:
2 cups potatoes, peeled and diced
4 strips bacon, chopped and fried
4 T margarine
¾ cup flour
¼ cup each carrots, onions, celery and bell pepper – all diced
1 quart water
1, 8-oz. bottle clam juice
1-1/2 lbs. canned or fresh clams, diced
1-1/2 lbs. canned or fresh baby shrimp
1 cup cream
½ tsp fresh thyme, chopped
¼ tsp sage
¼ tsp pepper
¼ tsp salt
Tabasco or hot sauce to taste.
Optional: Smoked salmon added great flavor.

Blanch potatoes until barely tender, just a few minutes. Rinse under cold water, drain and set aside. Sauté bacon, drain and set aside. Return bacon grease to pot and half of the margarine. Add flour and cook roux on low heat 3-4 min. Remove roux from pot and set aside. Add rest of margarine to pot and sauté vegetables until soft. Return roux to pot, add water and clam juice. Raise heat to high and cook 6-8 min until thick. Add clams, bacon, potatoes, seasoning and cream. Simmer 5 min.



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