¼ pound bacon, cut into ¼-inch pieces

1 large Spanish onion, peeled and diced

2 cups diced celery

2 cups diced carrots

1 green bell pepper, seeded, ribbed and diced

1 (28-ounce) can tomatoes

2 quarts clam broth

1 pound conch meat, pounded and diced*

10 small new potatoes, scrubbed and quartered

1 tablespoon dried thyme leaves

Pinch dried red pepper flakes

Salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste

In a large kettle or Dutch oven, cook the bacon over medium-high heat until almost crisp. Remove the bacon with a slotted spoon and set aside. Add the onion, celery, carrots and green pepper cooking until vegetables are soft, but not browned. Crush the tomatoes with your hands and add to pot with clam juice, potatoes, thyme and red pepper flakes. Bring to a boil; add the conch and simmer for 25 to 30 minutes. Add bacon back into pot; adjusting seasoning with salt and pepper to taste.

Makes 6 to 8 servings.

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