The Cliff House Clam Chowder



Despite it being hot outside, we enjoyed homemade clam chowder tonight!  YUM!  The only thing I did differently is that I used less onion (about 1/3 cup) and used canned potatoes to save time.  Next time I will cook the bacon until it is crispy and then add the other ingredients to saute.


Here’s a classic recipe for New England Clam Chowder courtesy of The Cliff House, which has served this recipe in its restaurant perched high above the rocky coast in York, Maine since 1872. Serving for six: (note: It made about 3 servings for us, but we had it alone as a meal.)


The Cliff House Clam Chowder

1 slice of hickory-smoked bacon, minced
1/2 teaspoon butter
1 cup of minced onion
1 medium garlic clove, minced
1 teaspoon The Cliff House Spice Blend
1 can clams (6-1/2 ounces)
1 cup bottled clam juice
1-1/2 cups Half and Half
1/4 teaspoon white pepper
2 medium potatoes, boiled, peeled and diced
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour


Create the The Cliff House’s Spice Blend: 4 tsps oregano, 4 tsps dried parsley, 2 tsps marjoram, 2 tsps dill, 4 tsps thyme, 4 tsps basil, 1 tsp sage, 4 tsps rosemary, 2 tsps tarragon, 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour, crushing in a mortar if possible. Store in a resealable plastic bag to refrigerate.

In a heavy-bottomed, 4-pint soup kettle, saute the bacon, butter, onion, garlic and spice blend over low heat. Do not allow to brown.

Drain clams and set aside, reserving the juice. Slowly stir the flour and clam juices in the saute mixture. Bring to a boil; reduce heat. Add Half and Half and simmer 20 minutes. Add white pepper, potatoes and clams. Heat to serving temperature. Do not allow to boil, as this toughens the clams. Serve with crackers and warm cornbread.



6 thoughts on “The Cliff House Clam Chowder

  1. Hey Christy how did you get that recepie from the restaurant? I can’t eat clam chowder but I have eatten at that restaurant before!!!!

    Hope all is well……

  2. Does the spice blend use fresh/dried herbs. Parsley is the only ingredient that specifies, which makes one wonder. I was assuming all dried, but then why don’t the other ingredients says dried like the parsley?

  3. Very good clam chowder. I peeled and diced the potatoes before cooking them.I am fussy about the doneness of the potatoes so this enabled me to control it better. Like you, next time I will cook the bacon first then saute. Adding bacon bits just prior to serving.

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