If you’re a seafood lover, then you must add this Fisherman’s Wharf-style Clam Chowder in Bread Bowl recipe to your list of must-try dishes. This classic San Franciscan obsession dates back to the mid-1800s and is a timeless dish traditionally served in sourdough bread bowls.
The chowder is made with canned clams, flour, salt pork, bacon, potatoes, onion, celery, dried thyme, Tabasco sauce, chicken broth, and heavy cream to give it that thick, creamy consistency.
Imagine enjoying a piping hot bowl of savory clam chowder topped with crispy bacon bits inside a freshly baked bread bowl from Boudin Bakery on Pier 39- the best clam chowder in Fisherman’s Wharf!
This recipe can easily become your family’s new favorite. It’s easy to make at home and bursting with flavors of the sea. Join me as we step into the famous Fisherman’s Wharf kitchen and recreate this delicious comfort food in the comfort of your own home!
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
Are you a fan of creamy, hearty and delicious soups? Look no further than this Fisherman’s Wharf-style Clam Chowder in a Bread Bowl recipe! Whether you’re a seafood fanatic, a fan of New England-style clam chowder or just enjoy bread bowls, this recipe has something for everyone.
Not only is this chowder thick, creamy and flavorful, but it also packs a punch with a dash of Tabasco sauce that adds the perfect amount of heat. And if you love sourdough bread, then you’ll love that this chowder is served in a freshly baked bread bowl – it’s the ultimate comfort food!
What makes this recipe stand out is its nod to the iconic Fisherman’s Wharf in San Francisco where the chowder dates back to the mid-1800s. It’s a timeless dish that’s traditionally served with cream; however, this version contains heavy cream for an extra luxurious texture. Plus, with canned clams as the star ingredient, it’s easy on your wallet and quick to prep when you’re craving for something delicious.
Whether you want to be transported to the West Coast or just crave a satisfying soup in a bread bowl, give this Fisherman’s Wharf-style Clam Chowder recipe a try – your taste buds will thank you!
Here are the ingredients you’ll need to make this Fisherman’s Wharf-Style Clam Chowder in Bread Bowl recipe:
- 1 can of chopped or minced clams, drained (6.5 oz)
- 1 bottle of clam juice (8 oz)
- 2 slices of bacon, chopped
- 1/4 cup of diced salt pork
- 1 onion, chopped
- 1 celery stalk, chopped
- 2 potatoes, peeled and diced
- 1/4 tsp of dried thyme
- 2 tablespoons of all-purpose flour
- 1 cup of chicken broth
- Tabasco sauce (optional)
- Salt and black pepper
- Boudin sourdough bread (or other artisanal bread with a thick crust and soft center)
Note: The ingredient list may seem long, but don’t worry – most of them are pantry staples, and you can easily find them in any grocery store. And trust me, it’s totally worth it to make your own chowder from scratch!
The Recipe How-To
Now that we have our ingredients ready, let’s start cooking the Fisherman’s Wharf-Style Clam Chowder in Bread Bowl Recipe.
Preparation of the bread bowl
- Cut off the top part of your sourdough bread round and set it aside.
- Hollow out the loaf to create a bread bowl.
- Brush the inside with melted butter then toast for a few minutes in the oven until crisp.
Preparing your ingredients
- In a large pot, cook salt pork or bacon over medium-high heat until they turn golden brown and release their fat.
- Add onion, celery and thyme until soft, about 5 minutes.
- Stir in flour and cook for 2 minutes.
- Add the drained canned clams and pour in clam juice, stirring well.
- Add diced potatoes, cover with chicken broth, and bring to a boil.
- Reduce heat to low, then simmer until potatoes are tender, around 15 minutes or so.
Putting it together
Thickening the chowder
- Add heavy cream and continue to simmer for another 10 to 15 minutes until desired thick creamy consistency is reached.
Seasoning to taste
- Add salt, pepper and Tabasco sauce to taste. Sprinkle bacon or cooked salt pork on top of the chowder.
- Pour chowder into your toasted bread bowl.
- Garnish with a few thyme leaves, and serve while hot!
Enjoy this San Francisco classic dish with our suggested pairings or get creative with your own ideas!
Substitutions and Variations
If you’re looking for ways to make this Fisherman’s Wharf-Style Clam Chowder recipe your own, there are plenty of substitutions and variations you can try.
First, let’s talk about the ingredients. While the recipe calls for canned clams, feel free to use fresh clams if you prefer. Just be sure to scrub them well and discard any that don’t close when tapped. You can also substitute bacon with salt pork or pancetta for a different flavor profile.
If you want to make this recipe gluten-free, swap out the all-purpose flour with a gluten-free alternative like rice flour or cornstarch. For a vegetarian version, substitute the chicken broth with vegetable broth and omit the bacon.
When it comes to seasoning, Tabasco sauce is optional. If you don’t have it on hand, try using another hot sauce or skip it altogether. Similarly, dried thyme can be replaced with other herbs like oregano or rosemary.
Now let’s talk about serving suggestions. While this chowder is traditionally served in a sourdough bread bowl, you could also serve it over rice or with a slice of crusty bread on the side.
To add even more flavor to your chowder, consider adding diced carrots or corn to the mix. For those who like spice, jalapeno peppers or red pepper flakes can be included as an additional ingredient.
By experimenting with these substitutions and variations, you can make this classic Fisherman’s Wharf-Style Clam Chowder recipe your own while staying true to its timeless roots.
Serving and Pairing
This hearty and rich Fisherman’s Wharf-Style Clam Chowder in a Bread Bowl recipe is best served hot fresh out of the oven with toasted bread. The thick, creamy chowder is the star of the dish and should be enjoyed on its own or paired with a light garden salad.
To complete the San Franciscan obsession, I highly recommend serving this chowder in a sourdough bread bowl from the iconic Boudin Bakery at Pier 39 in San Francisco. This will take your chowder experience to the next level and add an extra-tangy flavor to your dish.
If you want to impress your guests with decadence, serve this dish as an appetizer before a seafood-fueled main course such as fish tacos or grilled shrimp skewers. Alternatively, for lunch or dinner, pair the chowder with a lightly dressed spinach salad for a more balanced meal.
For beverage pairing, you cannot go wrong with an ice-cold beer, especially one that has citrus notes or a hoppy aroma. Additionally, a glass of white wine such as Sauvignon Blanc or Chardonnay complements the seafood ingredients in the chowder beautifully.
Overall, this timeless dish traditionally served at Fisherman’s Wharf should be savored and enjoyed as a standalone meal or paired with light sides and beverages that enhance its flavors.
Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating
Clam chowder is a thick, creamy stew that is a timeless dish, traditionally served in New England style bread bowls. The Fisherman’s Wharf-style clam chowder in bread bowl recipe dates back to the mid-1800s and is a San Franciscan obsession.
If you have leftovers from this recipe, they can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Since the heavy cream can separate with time, it is best to reheat your chowder on low heat, stirring occasionally to emulsify everything back together.
If you are planning ahead and want to make your chowder ahead of time, it can be kept chilled in the refrigerator for up to 2 days before serving. To ensure maximum freshness, store the chowder and sourdough bread bowls separately until ready to reheat and serve.
When reheating, you can use a microwave or heat it up over the stove. Just remember that you may need to add more clam juice or chicken broth if your chowder has become too thick. Additionally, if you want to try a different twist on this recipe, you could consider freezing individual portions of the stew for future meals.
Overall, the Fisherman’s Wharf-style clam chowder in bread bowl recipe is not only delicious but also versatile and easy-to-make. It can be made ahead of time and enjoyed for several days later. Whether you are serving your loved ones or hosting a party with friends, this creamy and flavorful clam chowder recipe will leave everyone satisfied and happy.
Tips for Perfect Results
To ensure that your Fisherman’s Wharf-Style Clam Chowder in Bread Bowl recipe turns out perfectly every time, follow these simple tips:
Firstly, when cooking the bacon or salt pork for this recipe, be sure to render it slowly over low heat. This will result in crispier and more evenly cooked bacon, and a richer flavor from the salt pork.
Secondly, when adding the flour to thicken the chowder broth, make sure to whisk it in thoroughly, breaking up any lumps. This will ensure a smooth and even consistency to the broth.
Thirdly, be sure not to overcook the potatoes. They should be tender but still hold their shape. Overcooking them will result in a mushy texture, which can ruin the texture of the chowder.
Fourthly, use fresh and high-quality ingredients whenever possible. This will give your chowder a rich depth of flavor that is worth the extra expense.
Lastly, if you like a bit of spice, try adding a few drops of Tabasco sauce to your clam chowder while cooking. It adds a delicious kick of heat without overpowering the other flavors in the dish.
By following these tips, you’ll be able to create a delicious and authentic Fisherman’s Wharf-Style Clam Chowder in Bread Bowl that will have your guests asking for seconds (and thirds!). Enjoy!
Before you start cooking the Fisherman’s Wharf-Style Clam Chowder in Bread Bowl recipe, it is essential to answer some of the most frequently asked questions. In this section, we will provide you with a comprehensive list of answers that may arise during the cooking process. So, let us dive in and clarify any doubts you might have!
How do you eat clam chowder in a bread bowl?
When serving soup in a bread bowl, it’s best to wait until the soup has been fully consumed before attempting to cut the bread. If using real utensils, such as a regular knife or your hands, make sure to do so with care and precision. Avoid using plastic knives as they may not be sturdy enough to cut through the moist and bulky bread. It’s important to consider the formality of the meal and to avoid any potential mishaps or social faux pas. For instance, even if you happen to have a dress with a print of clam chowder, it’s not advisable to attempt to cut the bread with a plastic knife as it may appear uncivil.
What is the difference between New England and San Francisco clam chowder?
The style of clam chowder can vary based on location. In New England, a thick, creamy broth is typical, while Rhode Island’s version is typically clearer. In San Francisco, a variation of the original recipe from the east coast is served in a sourdough bowl at Pier 39.
What is the thickener in New England Clam Chowder?
According to Charlie Burke from The Heart of New England, traditional New England chowders are typically not thickened with flour or other thickeners. Instead, the natural starches from potatoes are used to add slight thickness to the broth along with the addition of milk or cream.
What kind of bread goes with clam chowder?
When it comes to pairing bread with creamy chowder, I highly recommend sourdough bread. The sour flavor and distinct texture of sourdough bring out the flavors of the chowder, making for a delightful culinary experience. This combination is definitely worth trying out.
In conclusion, the Fisherman’s Wharf-Style Clam Chowder in Bread Bowl Recipe is undoubtedly a timeless dish that can bring the taste of San Francisco to your kitchen! With a few simple ingredients and easy-to-follow directions, you can make the best clam chowder that you’ve ever tasted. Whether you’re a seafood lover or looking for a hearty and comforting meal to enjoy with friends and family, this recipe will satisfy your cravings.
With its rich and thick creamy texture, flavorful herbs like thyme, and classic ingredients such as potatoes and bacon, this chowder brings together the best flavors of New England-style clam chowder with its own signature twist. And the best part about this recipe is that it can be served in a sourdough bread bowl – an iconic San Franciscan obsession dating back to the mid 1800s.
With its history and culture deeply rooted in seafood cuisine, San Francisco is home to some of the best clam chowders in the world. And now, with this recipe, you too can experience the taste of this West Coast favorite right in your own kitchen. So go ahead and give it a try – we guarantee you won’t be disappointed!
Fisherman’s Wharf-Style Clam Chowder in Bread Bowl Recipe
- 2 tablespoons diced salt pork or 1 slice bacon
- 1 finely chopped onion
- 1 finely chopped celery
- 1 medium potato, peeled and diced
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 2 cups clam juice
- 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 cup chopped canned clams
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 2 drops Tabasco sauce
- salt and pepper
- 1 1/2 lbs bread, bowl
- Place salt pork or bacon in a pot and cook 2 minutes over medium heat until crisp.
- Transfer to a plate and set aside.
- Add the onion and celery and saute over medium-low heat for 5 minutes or until onions are translucent and celery softens.
- Sprinkle flour over the mixture and stir into a paste.
- Add clam juice, potato and thyme.
- Increase heat and bring ingredients to a boil.
- Reduce to low and simmer for 15 minutes, or until potatoes are tender.
- Add clams and stir in cream.
- Continue to simmer for 5 minutes until thick and creamy.
- Add salt, pepper and Tabasco sauce.
- Spoon the chowder into the bread bowl and garnish with salt pork or bacon.
- Serve hot.
Your Own Notes
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Mishra Vikas is a digital nomad who loves to explore the world and learn about its cultures. As a programmer, backpacker, and cook, he enjoys sharing his adventures and cooking up delectable dishes. Writing about his experiences, creating tasty recipes, and discovering new places are some of his favorite activities. He’s an avid traveler and passionate chef, always on the lookout for an exciting new journey.