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Long Beach Island Clam Chowder
From Chef John Grifo

20 little neck clams
1 quart clam juice
8 oz. bacon, diced
8 oz. onion, diced
8 oz. celery, diced
10 oz. potatoes, diced
1 tsp. thyme
2 bay leaves

7 oz. flour
2 quarts scalded milk
24 oz. heavy cream, scalded
salt to taste
2 oz. sherry
1 oz. chardonnay
White pepper, to taste
hot sauce, dash
Worcestershire sauce, dash

Steam clams in clam juice. Reserve broth and strain through cheesecloth, coffee filter or white paper towel. Remove clams from shells and chop. Saute' bacon in a pot, then add onion, celery, bay leaf and thyme. Add flour to pot and cook to make a blond roux. Add reserved broth and sherry. Gradually add milk and incorporate it completely, working out any lumps that might form. Simmer for 25 minutes, skimming the surface, if necessary. Add potatoes to the soup, cook until tender. Add the clams and cream. Adjust seasonings to taste with salt and pepper, hot sauce and worchestershire sauce.

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