Clam Chowder Manhattan Style
2 tsp    olive oil  
2 Tbs    minced lean cooked ham  
1   large onion, chopped  
1   large celery rib, thinly sliced  
1   large carrot, peeled and thinly sliced  
2   garlic cloves, chopped  
1 1/2 tsp    dried oregano  
2   cans (10 1/2 oz.) chopped clams, drained, with juice reserved  
1   can (16 oz.) plum tomatoes with juice  
1/2 cup    dry white wine or water  
1 lb    all-purpose potatoes, peeled and roughly chopped into 3/4-inch dice  
1/4 tsp    dried red pepper flakes  
2 Tbs    chopped parsley  
  Salt to taste  
  Black pepper to taste  
1 In a large saucepan or soup pot, heat the oil, add the ham, and cook over medium heat for about 3 minutes, stirring, until lightly browned.
2 Add the onion, celery, and carrot and cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are quite soft, about 8 minutes.
3 Add the garlic and oregano and cook, stirring, for 1 minute.
4 Measure the clam juice and add enough water to make 4 cups. Add the liquid to the soup pot along with the tomatoes, wine, potatoes, and pepper flakes. Bring to a boil, breaking up any large chunks of tomato with the side of a spoon, reduce the heat to medium-low, and cook, partially covered, until the potatoes are tender, 10 to 15 minutes.
5 Add the reserved clams and simmer, uncovered, until heated through. Stir in the parsley and season with salt and black pepper to taste. (The chowder can be made up to 2 days ahead and refrigerated. Reheat gently before serving.)
Servings: 4
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