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Author Archives: Jim Alexander

Minorcan Clam Chowder

Minorcan Clam Chowder

The winter winds are blowing already and there is nothing like a hot, steaming bowl of Minorcan Clam Chowder to cure what ails you.

Minorcan Clam Chowder is “minorcan” in large part due to the use of the Datil pepper and the historical roots of the cuisine centered in and around St. Augustine  Florida. If you are a chowder lover, you are in for a real treat with Minorcan Clam Chowder. The Datil pepper is similar to the Scotch Bonnet pepper in taste, but with a distinct fruity flavor all its own. The heat is on par with its Caribbean counterpart and not insignificant but, quite manageable in a wide range of recipe settings. A little goes a long way.

minorcan clam chowder

Minorcan Clam Chowder Ingredients

The Clams

Little Neck Clams: 2 lbs in the shell

The Broth

Tomatoes: 1 – 28 oz can, diced

1/2 & 1/2: 1 cup

Clam Juice: 16 oz

The Fixin’s

Bacon: 1/2 lb julienned cross-wise

Red Potatoes: 2 cups, cubed

Onion: 1/2 large, diced

Red Pepper: 1/2 large, diced

Celery: 2 stalks, diced

Garlic: 2 cloves, diced

Datil Sauce: 2 Tbsp (you may substitute fresh Datil peppers. If so, 2-3 diced)

I use, and recommend, the Datil sauce made by the fellows at Minorcan Mayhem The product is superior and they are decent folk to work with.

Rosemary: 1 sprig

Thyme: 1 Tsp

Oregano: 1 Tsp

Salt: 1 Tsp

White Pepper: to taste

minorcan clam chowder ingredients

Here’s just about everything you will need to make Minorcan Clam Chowder sans the bacon and half & half.

 

minorcan clam chowder fixings

To get the dish right and to make the whole process run smooth there is a distinct order of activities.

Get all of the chopping, slicing and dicing of the fixin’s done first.

Puree the tomatoes and 1/2 & 1/2 in a blender.

Light the grill (you may skip this step if you choose to steam the clams on the stove top).

Pre cook the potatoes to almost done, drain and set aside

When your coals are ready get your clams on the grill. With a medium heat it will take 7-10 minutes for the clams to open up. I got lucky this time around… a 100% open rate. All good clams. Happy as a….

“Happy Clams”

 

While the clams are opening, saute the bacon, remove the meat when done and then saute the veggies in the bacon fat. Retrieve the now opened clams. Make an effort to pull the clams off the grill without losing too much of the juice that is in the shell. Good luck with that.

With the heat on medium. add the bacon back to the pan. Stir in the tomato/dairy mixture, the clam juice the Datil sauce and the spices. stir frequently bringing the pan to a slow simmer. Pull the clam meat from the shells, chop it up a bit and add to the pan. Cook/stir the contents of the pan for about 10 minutes to let everything have a chance to come together.

Plate it up and get it while it is hot.

This recipe is just one of three holiday appetizer dishes Old salt has created for you this season. Check out our Seared Yellowfin Tuna Nuggets and our Crab Stuffed Mushrooms as well.

Merry Christmas, happy holidays and tight lines. Bon Appétit

Seared Yellowfin Tuna Nuggets

Seared Yellowfin Tuna Nuggets

Strolling past the case at a favorite fish monger I spied a small carton of Yellowfin Tuna nuggets (the pieces that were leftover after the juicy steaks and loins were cut) being offered at $6/lb. Grabbed the entire carton. Smaller pieces like these do not sear up as nice as their larger counterparts (no cool… Continue Reading

2018 – A Year To Be Thankful For

2018 – A Year To Be Thankful For

Old Salt had a very busy 2018,  with a full calendar of tournaments, angler seminars and meetings, family seawall fishing events and youth programs.  Old Salt held the Silver Anniversary (25 years) Spring and Fall King of the Beach fishing tournaments hosting over 1100 teams across the two events. Teams came from across the country… Continue Reading

Crab Stuffed Mushrooms

Crab Stuffed Mushrooms

With ingredients that are readily sourced, a recipe that is straightforward & easy to prepare and with a final product that accommodates a wide range of palates….. this one is a proverbial no-brainer for the holiday season. Recipe Ingredients 12 Large White Mushrooms 1 ½ sticks of butter Juice from 1 Lemon 1 cup Italian… Continue Reading

Selecting A Cast Net

Selecting A Cast Net

Selecting the right cast net involves little art mixed with a little science. Bait size. Mesh size. Lead. Coverage. Your capabilities. Well, in this video from Barracuda Tackle, Burton Young walks you through the decision making process using Barracudas’s family of nets as examples. Catch up with Burton Young and Barracuda Tackle to enjoy great bait… Continue Reading

Fishing In Winter Winds

Fishing In Winter Winds

I think it’s safe to say our Florida “winter” is showing face. Over the last few weeks, we have been fishing in winter winds bringing colder water temperatures to Tampa Bay. There have been several days where catching live bait has been a struggle but we have managed to still keep a live well full… Continue Reading

Stone Crab Etouffee

Stone Crab Etouffee

Stone Crab Etouffee, you say? Never heard of it. Blue crab, sure. Misc. lump crab meat, sure. But, Stone Crab? Trust me….sure! Stone Crab season runs October 15 through May 15 annually. So, we quite naturally have a fair bit of this delicacy knocking about in the run up to the holidays and beyond. Most… Continue Reading

2018 Old Salt Fish Spread Contest

2018 Old Salt Fish Spread Contest

The 2018 version (9 years running now) of the Old Salt Fish Spread Contest was a huge success. As in the past several years the event was held at Gators Cafe on Johns Pass in Treasure Island, Fl – Tuesday November 13th. This particular get together is always one of the really fun one’s every… Continue Reading

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