I opened this thread to let all the cooks have a place to air their ideas about what constitutes a traditional New England Clam Chowder. I know there are a lot of ideas about what is traditional out there. I'd like to know what your ideas are.
I grew up in New England (Connecticut, Massachusetts, and New Hampshire), and cook mainly from my grandmother's recipes and the Fannie Farmer (Boston Cooking School) Cookbook. In my opinion, a good chowder must include rendered salt pork, onion, potato, freshly cooked clams with their juice, milk, and butter.
In particular, there is no cream involved. The soup is made sweet by the milk and not thickened by anything except a few tablespoons of flour per 6-8 servings.
Have at it!