1 kgCloudy Bay storm clams or another large clam60 gmunsalted butter, coarsely chopped1leek, finely diced1fennel bulb, finely diced2garlic cloves, finely chopped200 mldry white wine500 ml (2 cups)fish stock500 ml (2 cups)pouring cream2large King Edward potatoes, cut into 1cm dice150 gmfrozen broad beans2/3 cupcoarsely chopped French tarragon2 tbspcoarsely chopped dillJuiceof 1 lemonTo serve:crusty bread (optional)
Heat a large saucepan over medium heat, add clams, cover with a tight-fitting lid and cook, shaking pan occasionally, until clams open (3-4 minutes). Remove from heat, then, when cool enough to handle, remove meat from shells (reserve a few in shells to serve; discard remaining shells), finely chop and set aside, reserving pan juices separately.
Melt butter in a medium saucepan over low heat, add leek, fennel and garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, until tender (4-5 minutes). Add wine, simmer until reduced by half (2-3 minutes), add stock and reserved clam juices and simmer until reduced by half (5-7 minutes). Add cream and potato, simmer until potato is just tender and chowder thickens slightly (8-10 minutes).
Meanwhile, blanch broad beans until just tender (1-2 minutes), refresh, peel and add to chowder with herbs, lemon juice and chopped clams, top with reserved clams in shells and serve hot with crusty bread.
This recipe is from the February 2013 issue of Australian Gourmet Traveller.