Clam chowder is amazingly easy to make at home. This version is creamy, flavorful, and full of clams.
Heat a large stockpot or Dutch oven over medium high heat.
Add bacon and cook until brown and crispy, about 6-8 minutes.
Transfer the bacon to a paper towel lined plate, leaving the bacon grease in the pot. Set the bacon aside.
Melt butter in the pot. Add garlic and onion and cook, stirring frequently, until onions have become translucent, about 2-3 minutes.
Stir in the thyme until fragrant, about 1 minute.
Whisk in the flour until lightly browned, about 1 minute.
Gradually whisk in milk/half and half, vegetable stock, clam juice, and bay leaf and cook, whisking constantly until slightly thickened, about 1-2 minutes.
Stir in the potatoes.
Bring to a boil then reduce the heat and simmer until the potatoes are tender, about 10 minutes.
Stir in the half and half (if you want your soup thinner) and the clams until heated through.
Season with salt and pepper.
Serve immediately and garnish with the cooked bacon.
Original recipe from www.damndelicious.net