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Crab Chowder

1 slice uncooked bacon, diced
1/2 cup onion, chopped
1/2 cup celery, chopped
1 sprig fresh thyme or a couple good shakes of dried thyme
1 bay leaf
1 1/2 cups clam juice or good vegetable stock
6 small red potatoes, cubed (about two cups)
2 6 oz. cans of crab meat
2 cups milk
1 red pepper, diced
Fresh dill to garnish

Sauté bacon in a soup pot, heat over medium heat until starting to crisp up.

Add the onion, celery, thyme and bay leaf. Cook about 10 minutes, until vegetables are soft.

Add potatoes, the clam juice, or vegetable stock to the pot. Simmer about 10 minutes, until potatoes are tender.

Add milk, peppers, crab, and cook until the crab is just heated through.

Remove the thyme and bay leaf. Adjust the salt and pepper to taste.

Serve with a dollop of sour cream, sprinkle with dill.

Notes: I keep instant mashed potato flakes on the shelf to use as a little quick thickening for soups and stews. 

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