When notified she had won $150 with her Manhattan clam chowder in a 1983 Melba's Swap Shop contest, Irma Howard said she had just returned from a two-week art workshop in Crested Butte, Colo.
Howard, then 75, said she'd only started cooking a few years before because before her late husband retired she'd lived out of a suitcase 25 years and didn't maintain a home. She spent the last nine years of her life enjoying her newfound passion and sharing recipes in the pages of The Oklahoman. Howard died in 1993 at age 84.
Her version of red clam chowder is sure to warm the spirit of local Giants fans.
MANHATTAN CLAM CHOWDER
2 large onions, chopped
2 cups chopped, pared carrots.
2 cups chopped celery
6 (7½ ounces) cans minced clams
2 (28 ounces) cans tomatoes
4 cups water
4 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon pepper
2 bay leaves
2 teaspoons leaf thyme, crumbled
4 cups peeled, diced potatoes
• Saute onion, carrots and celery in bacon fat until tender.
• Drain liquid from clams into kettle. Add tomatoes, water, salt, pepper, bay leaf and thyme.
• Bring to boil; lower heat; simmer 30 minutes. Add potatoes; cook 15 minutes or until potatoes are tender. Remove bay leaf.
• Add clams and reserved bacon; simmer 5 minutes more. Sprinkle with chopped parsley, if desired.
• Source: Irma Howard.