photo courtesy of Emily Hutto and recipe courtesy of Chef Ricky Myers of Jax Fish House at 123 N. College Avenue in Fort Collins
serves 4 to 6
1 12-ounce bottle Funkwerks Saison
1 cup carrot, medium-diced
1 cup onion, medium-diced
1 cup celery, medium-diced
1 large tomato, medium-diced
1 large Russet potato, medium diced
1/4 lb. bacon
15 oz. can of chopped clams
15 oz. can of pureed tomato
3 cups seafood stock or bouillon
1 Tablespoon tomato paste
1 bay leaf
1/2 teaspoon chili flakes
1 Tablespoon garlic, minced
1 Tablespoon fresh thyme leaves, picked and chopped
Render bacon in a medium pot until crispy. Remove bacon (not the fat) from pot and set aside.
Add carrot, celery, onion, garlic, and bay leaf to pot. Cook on low heat and caramelize, about 15 minutes.
Add tomato paste and thyme and stir to coat rendered vegetables.
“Toast” tomato paste for about five minutes, stirring often. Deglaze tomato paste with beer and simmer for about five minutes to reduce beer just a bit.
Strain the clams, reserving the liquid.
Add the clam juice, lobster stock, diced tomatoes, chili flake, cooked bacon from the first step, and puréed tomato. Bring everything to a simmer for about 30 minutes.
Add the potatoes and continue to simmer until potatoes are tender.
Turn off heat, add chopped clams, and stir. Garnish with fresh-picked herbs of your choice.