nutritionist Chelsea

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21 Simple, Quick, & Easy Meals

Healthy New England Clam Chowder

Healthy New England Clam Chowder

Visiting Cape Cod at a young age made me fall in love with clam chowder, but as a child, it seems you never have to worry about calories and fat! For the health-conscious, I have created a creamy clam chowder WITHOUT the cream and butter, and you won’t feel like you are compromising on flavor or texture  Serves 3-4

What (your ingredients):
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 yellow onion, diced
2 stalks celery, diced
1 heaping tablespoon flour
2 cups milk (I used 1% to show you do not need heavy cream to make thick chowder)
1 ½ cups water
2 russet potatoes, diced
1 ½ cups corn kernels
½ teaspoon thyme
Salt and pepper
10 ounces clam meat

How (your directions):

In a large saucepan or stock pot, heat oil over medium heat and sauté onions and celery until translucent, about 5 minutes. Season with a pinch of salt.

Add the flour to the onion and celery mixture, and stir until flour is evenly distributed and cooked for about 30 seconds to a minute.

Add milk, and stir constantly until mixture is thickened, about 5 minutes.

Then add water, potatoes, corn, thyme, a pinch each of salt and pepper, and simmer until potatoes are tender, about 15-20 minutes.

When potatoes are fork tender, add clam meat and cook for about 2 minutes.

Taste, season with salt and pepper if necessary, and serve with your favorite crackers!

Why (the science):  The wonderful thing about combining flour and a hot fat (like the olive oil here) is that it creates a roux, a thick paste that will thicken any liquid. This cooking technique allows you to thicken this chowder without needing heavy cream or lots of butter, as the roux works with olive oil, too! No saturated fat here, which means this thick chowder is heart-healthy

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