New England Clam Chowder in the Slow Cooker

New England Clam Chowder in the Slow Cooker

1/2 pound bacon, cooked and diced (Mmmmmm, gotta love bacon!)
1 (16-ounce) can minced clams, drained (Dito on the clams!)
5 small red potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks ( I like Tators!)
1 onion, peeled and diced (I like Red Onions)
1 cup sliced celery ( I detest celery, so I dont put it in!)
2 garlic cloves, chopped (Peel them first, yep learned that one the hard way)
2 teaspoons dried thyme (excuse me Ma’am do you have the thyme? Old one but a good one)
1 teaspoon kosher salt (I like SEA salt of course)
1/2 teaspoon black pepper (Fresh ground be the course)
4 cups chicken broth (I like swanson but you use what ever you what this aint no dictatorship)
2 cups half-and-half (or you could use heavy cream)use the cream!
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese (to add later)cut a few slices for yourself, you look famished.

optional: bread bowls for serving. If you’re gluten free,(and who ain’t now days) We have made them by using boxed bread mix, then plopping 4 round dough blobs on a piece of parchment paper–they bake right up, and are perfect! We have made the bread bowls in our sun oven also but that is another recipe.

The Directions.

Use a 4-quart slow cooker. Brown the bacon on the stovetop,(Mmmm, Bacon) and drain the accumulated grease or referred to as Bacon Juice! It is recommended about 8 to 6 slices (We eat a a couple of those slices and use the rest…)
Put the bacon into your crockpot, use your best James Cagney impression and add the clams see. Add all the vegetables and spices and pour in the broth. Cover, and cook on low for 6 to 8 hours, or until the onion is translucent and the potatoes squish easily with a fork.
Use a hand-held stick blender and pulse a few times to naturally thicken the soup. Stir in cream or half and half and what ever is left of the shredded cheese. Ladle into wide-mouthed bowls or bread bowls.

Now as a side note and a southern delima! I have often pondered that being a boy from the south if I am eating out of a bread bowl then what will I sop up the left overs with?

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