Bahamian Conch Chowder is light and brothy, not creamy like the famous New England version. Leftovers thicken slightly, due to the starches that leach out of the potatoes. I might actually prefer this chowder the next day.
1 large onion, diced
2 garlic cloves, sliced
1/2 green pepper, diced
1 Anaheim pepper, diced
1 ham bone (I used a smoked ham shank)
1 15 oz can diced tomatoes
4 Tbsp tomato paste
2 carrots, sliced into half-moons
4-5 potatoes, cubed
1 cup clam stock
1 lb conch, diced
1/2 tsp dried thyme
3 bay leaves
water, to cover everything
1. In a large pot, sauté onion, garlic, green pepper, and Anaheim pepper, over medium heat until softened. Add ham bone, tomatoes, paste, carrots, potatoes, clam stock, conch, thyme, bay leaves, and water to cover.
2. Bring mixture to a simmer. Simmer covered for at least 2.5 hours, or until conch breaks down and gets tender. I simmered my chowder for 5 hours and all the flavors had melded wonderfully.
NOTE: If you try to serve this chowder prior to simmering for 2.5 hours, your conch will be tougher than rubber. You have been warned.
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