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New England Fish Chowder

1/4 lb Bacon; diced
1 lg Onion; peeled and thinly sliced
4 c Thinly sliced raw potatoes
2 c Water
2 c Clam broth or fish stock
1 ts Salt
1 Bay leaf
3 lb Cod fillets; cut into 2-inch pieces
1 cn (6-ounce) chopped clams; drained
1 ts Dried dill weed
1/2 ts Freshly ground black pepper
1/8 ts Cayenne pepper
2 c Milk
2 c Half-and-half
2 c Pilot; oyster or saltine crackers


Fry the bacon slowly in a large Dutch oven until golden brown and crisp. Remove the bacon with a slotted spoon and set aside.


Add the onions to the pan and cook until soft but not brown, about 10 to 15 minutes. Add the potatoes, water, clam broth, salt and bay leaf. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer, covered, for 20 minutes. Add the cod, clams, dill weed, black pepper and cayenne; continue cooking 10 minutes longer, or until fish flakes easily with a fork.


Remove pan from heat. Break up the potatoes a bit with the back of a fork. Slowly add the milk and half-and-half. Heat through on low heat.


Ladle the soup into serving bowls and crumble the crackers on top.



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