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A & B Lobster House Conch Chowder

Since 1947, A & B Lobster House has anchored (sorry about the pun) the seafood scene in Key West. This simple but oh so tasty chowder is synonymous with the Keys, and rightfully is a Signature Tastes classic!

1/2 lb. salt pork, finely chopped
2 medium sized onions, finely chopped
4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 large green pepper, finely chopped
1 28-oz. can tomatoes, drained and chopped
1 6-oz can tomato paste
1 teaspoon poultry seasoning
10 bay leaves
2 tablespoons barbeque sauce, homemade or bottled
1 teaspoon oregano
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 lbs. conch
2 quarts hot water
1 tablespoon vinegar
3 lbs. white potatoes, peeled and sliced

In a large skillet, fry the salt pork over medium heat. Add the onions, garlic and green pepper; saute until tender. Add the next eight ingredients. Simmer over low heat for 10 minutes.

Pound the conch very well with a heavy mallet to break up the tough, connective tissue and cut into bit size pieces. In a 6-quart Dutch oven combine two quarts water and vinegar; bring to a boil. 

Stir in the conch and tomato and spice mixture and simmer about two hours. Add sliced potatoes and simmer 20 to 30 minutes until potatoes are tender. Remove bay leaves before serving. Serve hot.