Oyster mushrooms star in this vegan interpretation of New England clam chowder made with diced potatoes, onion, and celery with a creamy, cashew-based broth. If Oyster mushrooms are unavailable, substitute White Button mushrooms, Chanterelles, or a combination of both.
Clam-Free Chowder With Homemade Vegetable Broth [Vegan, Gluten-Free]
Chowder serves 4. Vegetable broth makes 8 cups.
For the Clam-Free Chowder:
- 2 tablespoons vegan butter
- 8 ounces Oyster mushrooms, chopped
- 1 yellow onion, chopped
- 1 celery rib, minced
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 2 cups peeled and diced potatoes
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 teaspoon dulse or nori flakes
- 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1/2 teaspoon Old Bay seasoning
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 2 cups vegetable broth (recipe below)
- 1/4 teaspoon liquid smoke
- 1/2 cup raw cashews, soaked in hot water for 1 hour, then drained
- 2 cups unsweetened almond milk
- 1 tablespoon minced fresh parsley
For the Vegetable Broth:
- 2 teaspoons olive oil
- 2 onions, coarsely chopped
- 8 garlic cloves, crushed
- 10 cups water
- 6 carrots, coarsely chopped
- 6 celery ribs, coarsely chopped
- 1 cup mushroom stems or 2 dried mushrooms
- 1 cup coarsely chopped fresh parsley stems
- 1 teaspoon fresh or dried thyme
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 2 bay leaves
To Make the Clam-Free Chowder:
- Heat 1 tablespoon of the butter in a large pot over medium heat. Add the mushrooms and cook for 5 minutes. Remove from the pot with a slotted spoon. Add the remaining 1 tablespoon butter to the same pot over medium heat. Add the onion, celery, and garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes, or until softened.
- Stir in the potatoes, bay leaves, dulse, thyme, Old Bay, salt, pepper, and vegetable broth. Bring to a boil and then decrease the heat to low and cook for 30 minutes, or until the potatoes are just tender. Remove the bay leaves and stir in the liquid smoke.
- While the soup is simmering, blend the cashews and 1 cup of the almond milk in a high-speed blender until smooth. When the vegetables are tender, stir in the cashew mixture and the remaining 1 cup almond milk.
- Stir in the reserved mushrooms and heat the soup for a minute or two until hot. Taste and adjust the seasonings, if needed. Serve hot, garnished with the parsley.
To Make the Vegetable Broth:
- Heat the oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add the onions and garlic, cover, and cook until golden, stirring occasionally, about 8 minutes. Add the water, carrots, celery, mushroom stems, parsley stems, thyme, salt, black pepper, and bay leaves. Bring to a boil and decrease the heat to medium. Cook until the vegetables are tender and the broth is well flavored, about 30 minutes.
- Strain the broth into a large bowl using a colander. Press on the vegetables in the colander to release as much liquid as possible. Discard or compost the vegetables. Strain the broth using a fine-mesh strainer. Store the broth in airtight 2-cup containers so they are easy to use in recipes. The broth will keep well for up to a week in the refrigerator or up to 6 months in the freezer.
- To use the slow-cooker method, place your vegetables and water in a slow cooker, put on the lid, and cook on low for 8 hours.
Clam-Free Chowder from VEGANIZE IT! by Robin Robertson, William Brinson, and Susan Brinson. Copyright © 2017 by Robin Robertson, William Brinson, and Susan Brinson. Used by permission of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. All rights reserved. Vegetable Broth from VEGANIZE IT! by Robin Robertson. Copyright © 2017 by Robin Robertson. Used by permission of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. All rights reserved.