Rich, and creamy, clam chowder is a soup I've enjoyed eating since I was a young boy. The salty and milky flavors perfectly merge in easy to make recipe that can be made with so many different ingredients. My version offers a local twist to classic recipe. After a fun day driving along the beautiful coast of Maine, I got a craving for "Chowda". Since I already had locally sourced haddock, which is a sustainable and quality wild fish found up here on the northern Atlantic, and asparagus in the root cellar, I figured I'd continue with the theme of local and craft a recipe that used only seasonal Maine Ingredients (except for some spices).
For those of you who celebrated, I hope you had an enjoyable Easter yesterday. We drove down to York to spend time with Camille's family. It was a beautiful day in southern Maine and I was particularly happy to spend time outdoors and even sneak in a seaweed harvest at the beach. My mother-in-law cooked up a delicious smoked pork shoulder, not quite a ham, but close enough. ;) I'm pretty sure I could eat ham every day, as it is just so darn flavorful.
Chocolate... You know you love it! But, if you try to play it off and say it's toxic, well, either you've never had good chocolate, or you just don't enjoy having fun! We're big fans of the Theobroma cacao and happily consume as much as our cacao induced open hearts desire! Both Cami and I have been fortunate to work with some really great chocolate products including freshly harvested cacao beans complete with their deliciously sweet and tart fruity outer layer. In fact Camille has planted many cacao trees at her former residence in Hawaii.
Chocolate dates back to 1100 BC and was enjoyed in copious amounts by Montezuma, whom was said to consume 50 cups daily to enhance his libido. Chocolate has stood the test of time and continues to bring smiles to people of all ages. Jeanne Calment, whom lived to be 122 years old, ate upwards of 1 kilo, that's 2.2 pounds of chocolate per week. The research continues to lean towards chocolate being a longevity food, one that is mineral rich and ranks amongst the highest antioxidant foods sources available. Sacred Heart Chocolate, which is by far our favorite commercially made chocolate company, has tons of info and studies pertaining to chocolate and it's health benefits, which you can find here.
Soothing the Soul...
When the cold sets in, nothing feels more soothing then a cup of hot cocoa. Gently warmed raw milk, lightly sweetened with maple syrup puts smiles on the entire family, including our little guy Wilder. Whenever possible, I love to upgrade my meals with wild foods, so vanilla like quality of chaga tea gets added into the mix. If chaga in unavailable to you, simply use all milk for the liquid base, and please, no skim or lowfat milk please, that would just be cruel!
- 2 cups Raw Milk
- 2 cups Chaga Tea (optional)
- 1/4 cup + 2 Tbsp Cacao Powder
- 1/4 cup Maple Syrup or desired sweetener
- pinch of Sea Salt
- Add the milk and tea into a sauce pot and slowly warm over medium heat.
- Once it's hot, whisk in the salt and cacao powder.
- Continue to whisk as you sweeten to taste.
- Pour into your favorite mug, sit back, and enjoy!