National New England clam chowder day
January 21st, 2013
09:00 AM ET
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While you're frying up some eggs and bacon, we're cooking up something else: a way to celebrate today's food holiday.

Today's food holiday is chowdah this world - January 21 is National New England Clam Chowder Day.

Let’s get one thing straight off the bat: New Englanders are serious about their chowder. Chowders - a hearty soup typically made from seafood and/or vegetables - vary by region. The differences might seem subtle to the untrained eye, but to representatives of that region, they’re black and white.

The main difference between a New England clam chowder and a Manhattan clam chowder is the addition of tomatoes to the latter. Italian immigrants brought tomatoes with them to the New World and they became so popular, they were put in most dishes. New Englanders disagree with this addition, so much so that in 1939, an assemblyman in Maine introduced a bill making it illegal to add tomatoes to clam chowder.

New England clam chowder is a milk- or cream-based soup that’s thickened by the starch from potatoes or crushed crackers. Onions and celery sautéed in bacon fat add a salty component that complements the clams. Littleneck or cherrystone clams work best for chowders. They’re cooked in salted water until the shells open revealing the sweet and salty flesh. The liquid the clams are cooked in becomes the broth for the soup, adding extra clam flavor. New England chowders are served simply with crackers and a spoon.

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Filed under: Breakfast Buffet • Food Holidays • News


soundoff (8 Responses)
  1. Puritanistic-ish

    You are so off-base. It's Chowdah.

    January 21, 2013 at 3:15 pm |
    • Pilgrim

      Well I am, after all , a transplanted Midwesterner. But I can in fact speak New-Englandese. I can say chowdah, lobstah, hahvahd yahd, packy, apple cobblah, tonic, spa, bubblah, hahbah, My wifes best friends are Treeser and Leeser, I love eating peetzer, and I know where to pahk my cah!

      January 22, 2013 at 1:07 pm |
  2. Pilgrim

    New England clam chowder, like the Lobster Roll, is one of the basic and wonderful components of New Englad cuisine. As a transplanted Midwesterner, I'd already loved chowder, but have delighted in discovering that every diner and eatery I visit has their own, unique iteration of chowder. Each is slightly different, each wonderfully delicious, and always flavorful and hearty. New England at its best!

    January 21, 2013 at 11:39 am |
    • Jdizzle McHammerpants ♫♫

      NE has nothing on Alaskan clam chowder.

      January 21, 2013 at 2:14 pm |
      • Tom Brady

        We don't even have a football team !!

        January 21, 2013 at 2:27 pm |
        • Jdizzle McHammerpants ♫♫

          That "slide" yesterday was the worst sportsmanship I've seen in a long time. Right up there with 'Roid Rage Clemens throwing the broken bat at Piazza

          January 21, 2013 at 2:44 pm |
  3. Jdizzle McHammerpants ♫♫

    Awesome!

    January 21, 2013 at 10:04 am |
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