Bacon Loves Clam Chowder Gnocchi


Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Serves


Appears in

The Bacon Bible

The Bacon Bible

By Peter Sherman and Stephanie Banyas

Published 2019

  • About

My head chef, Nick Karoly, made this for his tasting when he applied for the job. I told him I wanted him to re-create something classic that had bacon in it and what I got was actually two classics: creamy New England clam chowder and pasta alle vongole with pillowy potato gnocchi standing in for the spaghetti. It is a soup that eats like a meal.


  • 2 cups (480 ml) Bacon Clam Stock
  • 24 littleneck clams, scrubbed
  • 4 tablespoons (55 g) unsalted butter
  • 2 shallots, finely diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, finely diced
  • ½ cup (120 ml) heavy cream
  • 3 tablespoons finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves, plus more for garnish
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 8 thin strips bacon, cut into fifths
  • Gnocchi
  • Finely grated zest of 1 lemon


In a large Dutch oven, bring the stock to a boil. Stir in the clams, cover the pot, and cook, shaking the pot a few times, until all of the clams open, about 5 minutes. Remove the cooked clams to a large bowl (discard any that have not opened). Let cool, then reserve 6 in shell for garnish. Remove the meat from the remaining clams and discard the shells. Strain the clam broth through a fine-mesh sieve lined with cheesecloth into a medium bowl and set aside. Rinse out the pot and return it to medium heat.

Add 2 tablespoons of the butter to the pot and cook until melted. Add the shallots and garlic and cook until soft, about 1 minute. Add the reserved broth, increase the heat to high, and cook until reduced by half. Add the cream and cook until slightly reduced, about 2 minutes. Stir in the parsley and season with ¼ teaspoon pepper. Remove from the heat and stir in the cooked clams. Cover and keep the sauce warm.

While the sauce is reducing, put the oil and bacon in a large, deep sauté pan over medium heat and cook until golden brown and just crispy, about 8 minutes. Remove to a plate lined with paper towels, let cool slightly, and coarsely chop.

You should have about ¼ cup (60 ml) rendered fat in the pan; heat over medium heat, then add the remaining 2 tablespoons butter and cook until melted. Add the gnocchi in two batches and cook until golden brown on each side, about 1 minute per side.

With a slotted spoon, transfer the gnocchi to the sauce and gently stir to coat. Divide among 4 large shallow bowls and garnish with the bacon, parsley, and a bit of lemon zest.

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