Chop leeks (discarding most of the green part), shallots, garlic, and onions and sauté in a little olive oil for 5 minutes. Place sautéed vegetables in a very large pot and add all other ingredients except clams. Bring to a boil, lower heat and cook over medium heat for 20 minutes uncovered, stirring occasionally. Add scrubbed clams; cover and simmer until clams open, about 5 to 10 minutes. Remove bay leaves before serving. Better if made the day before and refrigerated. When reheating, don't let it boil. Serve in large flat soup plates with a freshly boiled potato and lots of crusty French bread. Serves 8 to 10.
Recipe prepared by Chef Gary Sokaitis of The Inn & Garden Cafe in Onancock, VA
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