Smoked Alaskan Seafood Chowder

Recipe courtesy of Chef Susie Linford

Makes up to 20 8-oz. servings

1 lb thick cut bacon cut into 1” pieces
1 large yellow or white onion, diced
1 Tbs minced garlic
1 cup diced potatoes
1/2 cup chopped carrots
1/2 cup chopped celery
1 cup frozen or canned corn
1 can Rotel Diced Tomatoes with Green Chilis
1/2 quart baby clams with clam juice
1 cup chicken stock
1 cup heavy cream

Any or all of the following:
1 lb cooked shrimp, peeled, deveined and tail off
1/2 lb Wild Caught Alaskan crab meat, shelled and cartilage removed
1 lb fresh or cooked Wild Caught Alaskan Salmon
1/2 lb fresh or cooked Wild Caught Alaskan Halibut
1 lb Wild Caught Alaskan Scallops

Optional: Instant mashed potatoes

In a heavy duty stock pot, cook bacon, onions, and garlic on medium heat until bacon is crisp. Add potatoes and continue to cook on medium heat. Add carrots and celery; continue to cook on medium heat. Add corn and Rotel tomatoes; continue to cook on medium heat. Add baby clams with clam juice, chicken stock and heavy cream. Simmer on low for 2-4 hours. Add in any or all seafood. Do not add seafood early as it will break down and overcook. Chowder can be thickened by slowly adding instant mashed potatoes until the desired consistency is reached. Tabasco is optional for a spicier version. Serve with a garden salad and cornbread muffins. Excess chowder can be frozen for up to six months.