Basic way of making chowder!

3 ounces salt pork, rind discarded and the salt pork cut crosswise into 1/4-inch strips
1 onion, chopped
2 small red potatoes
1 cup water
25 shucked medium hard-shelled clams, reserving 3/4 cup liquor, chopped*
1 1/2 cups half-and-half, scalded

*If shucked fresh clams are not available, a 6 1/2-ounce can minced clams, drained, and 3/4 cup bottle clam juice may be substituted.

Rinse the salt pork and pat it dry. In a heavy saucepan sautι the salt pork over moderately high heat,  stirring, until it is golden, transfer it with a slotted spoon to paper towels to drain, and pour off all but 1 1/2 tablespoons of the fat. In the fat remaining in the pan cook the onion over moderately low heat, stirring, until it is softened and stir in the potatoes, cut into 1/2-inch cubes, and the water.  Simmer the mixture, covered, for 10 minutes, or until the potatoes are just tender, and boil it, uncovered, for 12 minutes, or until most of the liquid is evaporated. Stir in the clams and the reserved liquor and simmer the mixture for 2 minutes. Stir the half-and-half and the salt pork into the clam mixture and season the chowder with salt and pepper.

Makes about 4 cups, serving 2. 

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