Besides lobster sandwiches, Mason’s Famous Lobster Rolls specializes in another New England dish: clam chowder. Their version isn’t too heavy, and gets a flavor boost from salt pork.
Serves 4 to 6
½ cup water
2 quarts littleneck clams, well-scrubbed
½ clove garlic, minced
1 ounce salt pork, finely chopped
1 cup chopped onions
1 tablespoon and 1½ teaspoons flour
2¼ cups clam broth
1½ cups fish stock
¾ pound potatoes, peeled and diced
1 cup light cream
Salt, to taste
Oyster crackers, for serving
In a covered stockpot, bring the water to a boil. Add the clams and garlic and cook 6 to 10 minutes over medium high heat, or until the clams have just opened. Drain the clams and reserve the broth. Strain the broth through a coffee filter or cheesecloth to remove any grit. Remove the clams from their shells, finely chop, and set aside.
In a large heavy saucepot, cook the salt pork over low heat until the fat has rendered. Using a slotted spoon, remove the pork and reserve it. Add the onions to the pork fat, raise the heat to medium-high, and cook for 5 to 7 minutes, until they are softened but not browned. Add the flour and cook for 3 minutes, stirring constantly. Add the reserved broth from cooking the clams, the 2¼ cups clam broth, and the fish stock. Whisk to remove any lumps. Bring the liquid to a boil. Add the potatoes, reduce the heat, and simmer for about 15 minutes or until the potatoes are cooked through. Stir in the reserved chopped clams, the salt pork, and the light cream.Season to taste and serve with oyster crackers.