Sunday, February 10, 2008

Manhattan Clam Chowder

Hmph...finally got around to making this. I've been meaning to, oh, forever or so. Spicy, warming, good for ya.

1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil (or butter)
1 large yellow onion, roughly chopped
1 celery stalks, roughly chopped
1 garlic clove, minced
1 strip bacon, diced
1/2 Tbsp flour
1 (8 oz) bottles clam juice along with 1 cup water
1 can high-quality diced tomatoes, processed until smooth
2 cups Clamato
1/2 Tbsp sugar
1/2 Tbsp red pepper flakes
1 sprig of fresh thyme or 1/4 tsp dried thyme
1/2 bunch fresh flat-leaf parsley, chopped
1 potato, scrubbed and cubed
1 (6.5 oz) can of chopped clams, juice drained and reserved
salt and fresh ground pepper to taste

1. In a large saucepot, heat olive oil over medium heat and toss in the onion, celery, garlic, and bacon; cook 4-5 minutes until the onion is wilted and translucent. Stir in the flour until it blends
into a paste.

2. Slowly whisk in the clam juice until smooth. Add tomatoes, Clamato, and sugar and give a good stir. Toss in the pepper flakes, thyme, and parsley. Season with salt and pepper.

3. Add the potato, bring to a boil, and boil hard for about 5-10 minutes or until the potato start to
break down. Then reduce the heat, cover, and simmer for 10-15 minutes. Add clams and simmer an additional 8 minutes or longer as flavors come together. Season again as needed and serve.

WW hand-wringers take note, each cup of this is two points. Enjoy.

Crab and Corn Pasta

Hey, where have I been? Well, I've been dragged into WW with my wife. So, in the beginning I was eating so simply there was nothing worth writing about, but now I'm putting some effort into finding extra-healthy things to make that I'd not be embarrassed to post (for example: ham sandwich on whole wheat bread with some lettuce!). This meal here, for example, was very satisfying and feels more decadent then it really is.

If you have all the ingredients on hand, this simple supper can be made in 20 minutes.

6 oz uncooked penne
1 Tbsp vegetable oil
2 medium red peppers, seeded and chopped
2 medium onion(s), sliced
2 Tbsp all-purpose flour
2 cup fat-free skim milk
10 oz frozen corn kernels, thawed
1 tsp dried basil
1/2 tsp table salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
6 oz canned crabmeat, drained

2 Tbsp grated Parmesan cheese
2 Tbsp parsley, chopped

Cook the penne according to package directions; drain and keep warm.

In a large saucepan or saute' pan, heat the oil. Sauté bell pepper and onions until softened, about 5 minutes. Sprinkle with flour; cook, stirring constantly, 1 minute.

Gradually stir in milk; bring to a boil and cook, stirring constantly (use a wisk to scrape up any cooked flour from the bottom of the pan, to thicken the milk), 1-2 minutes. Stir in corn, crabmeat, basil, salt and pepper.

Remove from the heat; stir in penne. Reheat 2-3 minutes and serve, sprinkled with cheese and parsley.

For you WW monsters out there, divide this into four portions, each is 8 points.
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