Eileen's New Jersey clam chowder. 2/20/17. Blogfinger photo.

Eileen’s Greatest New Jersey Clam Chowder. 2/20/17. Blogfinger photo.


By Eileen Goldfinger, Food Editor @Blogfinger.net


2 dozen fresh little neck clams

3 6.5 ounce cans chopped clams, drained.  Save the liquid.

2 stalks celery, diced

2 carrots, diced

1/2  large sweet onion, diced

1 medium potato, peeled & diced

1 small red bell pepper, diced

2 ears fresh corn; remove kernels from cob (or 2/3  cup frozen corn) optional

2 tablespoons butter or margarine

3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

7 cloves of garlic, minced

4 tablespoons tomato paste

5 tablespoons fresh parsley, minced

1 cup clam juice

4 cups chicken broth

1 28 ounce can of whole San Marzano tomatoes, drain liquid (crush tomatoes with hands)

¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes (more if you like very spicy)

¼ teaspoon salt

½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1 bottle beer

Don’t panic at all the ingredients. Most are already in your pantry and most are added to one pot.


Clam preparation:

While preparing the soup base,  place fresh clams in a large bowl of cool water with 2 tablespoons of corn meal mixed in. This will clean the shells and cause the clams to disgorge any sand they may have ingested. Discard any clams that are cracked or open.


Soup preparation:

In a 5 quart  Dutch oven, heat butter and extra virgin olive oil on medium heat. Then add onion, carrots, celery, pepper, potato, and cook for 10 minutes.  Next add clam juice, tomato paste and garlic;  stir and cook for another 10 minutes. Add  chicken broth, corn, parsley, salt, black pepper, red pepper flakes, and San Marzano tomatoes.  Stir and cook at a simmer for 15 minutes .  Make sure the potatoes are fork tender.


While the soup cooks, prepare the fresh clams.  In a 12” fry pan add the contents of a bottle of beer and bring beer to a boil.   Lift clams straight up and out of the water that they have been sitting  in.  This leaves any sand they have expelled on the bottom of the bowl.  Place them in the boiling beer, cover the pan, and cook for 5 minutes.  Remove cover, and as the clams open, remove them with tongs and set them aside on a plate.  If they cook too long they will become tough,  Discard any clams that do not open.


While these clams are cooking, add the 3 cans of chopped clams to the soup and stir. Use the saved broth to add to the soup if it becomes too thick.  



When all the fresh clams have opened, ladle soup into bowls and place equal amounts of fresh clams with shells on top. (or remove clams from their shells and add the clams to the soup.)

Serve with a rustic bread.

This recipe will serve 4 people as an entré or 8 as an appetizer.

MOUND CITY BLUE BLOWERS:   “Thanks a Million.”



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In Ocean Grove we should think about our historic homes, and Blogfinger will post photographs. Here is the story of 107 Central Avenue re-posted from 2011. Click on Blogfinger below this sentence. —Paul @Blogfinger.net


By Paul Goldfinger, editor  @Blogfinger

Mr. Thomas Freund, a 46-year-old heating and cooling contractor, has been coming to Ocean Grove  since he was 13 years old. His father has been the proprietor of the Quaker Inn since 1979.  Tom  was already the owner of two homes in the Grove when he spotted 107 Central Avenue five years ago.  He loved the potential of the property which has a driveway with garage and a prime location on the corner with Clark Avenue facing Fletcher Lake.  He saw that it would be his “dream house.” He learned that the original owners were members of the Scott Paper Towels family, although he is unsure of the date of construction.

107 Central Avenue at Clark: corner angle view. Paul Goldfinger photos.

Tom saw that renovations would be needed, but he felt confident because the structure had “good bones.”   The outside was clad in aluminum…

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Steamed fish. Prepared by Eileen Goldfinger with Vivian’s recipe. PG photo.  Re-post from 2012 on Blogfinger.net

Vivian Huang’s Delicious Steamed Fish

1/2 pound cod fish (loin)

2 tablespoons finely grated fresh ginger

5 scallion (3 thinly sliced on the diagonal & 2 for garnish)

1 1/2 tablespoons of fish soy sauce or oyster sauce

3 tablespoons chicken stock

2 1/2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 clove garlic finely grated *

Place fish on a microwave safe plate and top with 1 tablespoon ginger and garlic. Cover completely with plastic wrap and microwave for 4 minutes on high.


Heat oil in a small sauce pan until it simmers. Add remaining ginger and sliced scallions.

Add fish sauce and stock. Simmer for 2 minutes.

Remove plastic wrap from fish. Pour any juices from the fish into the sauce pan and simmer for another minute. Pour the sauce over the fish, garnish with the 2 whole scallions.

Serves 2

* Vivian’s recipe did not contain garlic; that was my addition (Eileen Goldfinger, food editor @Blogfinger).

Editor’s Note: Vivian Huang is an expert in Chinese cuisine. She is not a professional chef, but she is an excellent home cook who was born in Taiwan. This recipe is a superb example of heart-healthy cooking. The fish is steamed.  Cod fish is low in cholesterol,  high in protein, and rich in  nutrients such as calcium and potassium.

A small amount of extra virgin olive oil is used in the recipe which, in the prevention world, is considered to be a “good oil.” Ginger has been utilized for centuries for its medicinal benefits, and garlic is an herb with reputed health benefits in heart disease. The recipe is low in fat and calories and it contains, of course, omega-3 fish oils.

Note that Paul Goldfinger, MD and Eileen Goldfinger have written a book called “Prevention Does Work:A Guide to a Healthy Heart.” Eileen’s recipe section stresses sea food preparation. The book is available at Amazon.com and BarnesandNoble.com

MUSIC. If you want some authentic Chinese sea food, you should take a slow boat to China with a really good friend, catch the fish yourself, and let the crew prepare it. Then eat it under the stars. Here is Renee Olstead with Carol Weisman:    — PG

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Bill Carroll with (L to R) Tessa (10, ) Olivia (13,)  Emma (5) Sophia (15), and Bill (46).  Photo by Mrs. Carroll.   Re-post from 2014.  Ocean Grove lifestyles.

We often post photo portraits of Grovers, so we are delighted to publish this family image. If  you send us portraits, please send quality images and include a story to go with it.

Hi Paul,

I was just cleaning out my photos on my wife’s phone.  We have a summer house on Mt. Tabor and have been coming to Ocean Grove since the year my oldest daughter Sophia was born 1998.  We like to get egg sandwiches in AP at that small news stand and then go to the beach.  The girls love the time we can spend in OG and we can’t wait to come back this summer.  We purchased our home when we were living in Jersey City and are now back in Cazenovia, NY near family.

It reminded me of some of the pictures you post and feel free to share!

Thanks for keeping us updated all year and I thoroughly appreciate your blog!  It is a great service for the Grove!!

Bill Carroll


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Jim Carrano. In case you have never seen a GA usher in a full dress uniform, this is it. Blogfinger photo,with permission of Jim, the most respected usher in the Mountains of Ocean Grove.

Jim Carrano. In case you have never seen a Great Auditorium usher in a full dress uniform, here he is.    Blogfinger photo, with permission of Jim, the most respected usher in the Mountains of Ocean Grove.  Repost from August, 2014.

By Paul Goldfinger, Editor @Blogfinger.

In order to read this post, you need to start the music first:

I went to photograph Jim—to ask him for help with Blogfinger,  but he looked at me through his sunglasses, he stared for short while, and then he said, “Paul, we’ve known each other many years, but this is the first time you came to me for counsel, for help. I can’t remember the last time that you invited me to your house for a cup of coffee, even though my wife is godmother to your only child. But let’s be frank here: you never wanted my friendship. And uh, you were afraid to be in my debt. 

But it was Sunday morning, and Jim was wearing his Great Auditorium suit, complete with a white flower. So I offered him my respect, and he felt compassion and he let me photograph him. I didn’t dare position him on the hatched yellow lines—-no way.  I took only two frames for fear that he would make me an offer that I couldn’t refuse.

Finally he said, “Paul, some day, and that day may never come, I’ll call upon you to do a service for me. But uh, until that day — accept this photograph  as a gift on this fine Ocean Grove Sunday and you will photograph the flowers in front of my house…….won’t you?  And you will put that photograph on Blobfinger!”  (sic)

(Editor’s note–from Paulie G: and we did! )

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By Paul Goldfinger, Editor @Blogfinger.net

In a long summary of the HOA’s January 26 meeting, the Coastericans of Asbury Park present an unsigned report filled with hot air, gibberish and somnolence.

Did anyone really believe that inviting the new CMA Executive Director, James “Jaimie” Jackson, would result in anything but the chance to practice alliteration and to evade insights into matters that really count in the Grove. Let’s consider some of what he had to say:

A hope for the future: “I hope people will experience God’s love before they realize they are experiencing God’s love.”

The CMA will “commemorate” the 150th anniversary of the founding of Ocean Grove. And the first thing he mentions is a “capital campaign that will be launched for the purpose of raising funds to improve the community.” Was there raucous applause for that revelation? Would he like to define “community” for us? The CMA has a history of messing around with the meaning of that word.

And then, up pops the P word as he says that “he wants to rebuild the fishing pier” and he wants to use the money raised for the pier among “other items.” This is from the same group that refused to accept funds to rebuild the pier as offered by the historic OG Fishing Club. That would have cost the “community” nothing 

When asked about an “update” regarding the North End “development project,” he said that “the  project is a long time coming, and the area is in need of development. ” He then passed the buck to Neptune Township for further clarification. Evidently he doesn’t know much about this subject. 

As for not knowing much, the HOA President is quoted as saying, regarding parking at the North End, “I thought the The North End project would not require off-street parking.” Say it isn’t so Barbara. Were you misquoted?

But Joyce Klein, the leader of the HOA Parking Committee said, “The project’s parking must be in compliance with RSIS (New Jersey Resident Site Improvement Standards.”) But doesn’t Joyce know that the original NERP from 2008 already promises that.

And do these two HOA officials really want to press the CMA on this when the CMA has totally given up planning and would prefer to be anywhere else but at the HOA to trying to wrestle with these questions.

And there is more to report, but enough is enough. It’s Howdy Doody Time in the Grove.


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Calendar art from 1922. Blogfinger collection. ©

Calendar art from 1922. Blogfinger collection. ©

By Paul Goldfinger, Editor @Blogfinger.

In 1922 there were certain companies that specialized in “calendar art” like our image above.  This is a  hand colored photograph that illustrated a sample calendar  designed for a company called Johnson Brothers,. purveyors of lumber-timber and moldings.  They  were from 45 Classon Avenue in Brooklyn, N.Y.  Their phone number was Williamsburg 3503.

The  cover sheet contained the photo titled Blithe and Bonny, no doubt descriptors of the young lady in the photo.  Also in front was a small (2  1/2 by 3 inches) calendar that was engraved on the outside , but inside was a January, 1922 calendar.  The total design was done in beige and gold, but the engraving was beige on beige, with raised letters that said, “May all happiness and prosperity attend you.”

They sure were serious about their calendars during the roaring twenties.  Probably the  next advance in calendars was in the forties and fifties when “pin-ups ” were the rage.  I can recall  going with my dad to a garage and surreptitiously  glancing at the pin-up calendars on the wall.

The title is interesting.  One could argue that the beautiful girl in the photo needs no introduction, however, blithe means “happy without worry” while “bonny” simply means “lovely.”   Blithe has another meaning which surely could not describe her.


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In 2016 we posted a piece about the changes which a developer wanted to make to a historic building on Main Avenue. This 2016 article goes into the weeds, and the information is very interesting and still applicable. Also read the comments.

The developer lost his battle to add a third floor to the “pizza building.”  The shops and probably the apartments in that building remain empty.  Updates would be appreciated in our comments section.  You can add 2019 comments to the original ones from June, 2016.

Click on the word “Blogfinger” below this sentence.    —Paul @Blogfinger


In front of #58-60 Main Avenue, currently a two story building near Pilgrim Pathway. Pizza place is on the corner to the right. Paul Goldfingerphoto. June, 2016 In front of #58-60 Main Avenue, currently a two story building near Pilgrim Pathway. Pizza place is on the corner to the right. Paul Goldfinger photo. June, 2016 ©

Internet graphic Internet graphic

By Paul Goldfinger, Editor @Blogfinger  and Jack Bredin, Reporter/Researcher for Blogfinger

We have just received an OPRA   (Open Public Records Act) copy of the Site Plan application for “60 Main Street” from the Neptune Township office of  the Zoning Board of Adjustment/Planning Board, and the application contains so many questionable entries, that it raises a number of red flags.

Below are some of the issues that we have noticed and we wonder if Neptune Township will approve this application  and pass it onto one of their two boards.  Currently it is not on the agenda for the next Zoning Board of Adjustment meeting.

The checklist says that the application will not be deemed complete until full plans are available…

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Ocean Grove, New Jersey 2019. © Google.  Click to enlarge.

By Paul Goldfinger,  Editor @Blogfinger.net

“Curiouser and curiouser!” cried Alice.  She was so much surprised, that for the moment she quite forgot how to speak English.”

This is by Lewis Carroll, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass.

You can click on the map above  (dated 2019)  to see a few interesting items:

a.  Since when are research maps marred by advertisements?  Notice the Asbury Beer Hall and the Arts Center in Ocean Grove.  Regarding the latter, where the Heck Avenue is the Great Auditorium?

b.  Wesley Lake is not wearing its latest official name as a “retention detention basin.”

c. The streets along the Lake, OG side, have no names.  What happened to Lake Avenue, that infamous walkway/official street? How about Main Avenue?

d. The North End Redevelopment Area seems to be carved out and made part of Asbury.

e. What about the extension of Ocean Grove into the Ocean?  Does that eastern boundary  presume to say something about ownership of the Ocean?  Or what?  Jack??

BUENA VISTA SOCIAL CLUB   “Veinte Anos”   Are we speaking the same language in this town?

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She got lost searching for her car in OG. Months later she turned up sitting on a bench outside the Pathway Market playing scratch-off.     Blogfinger photo.  Summer, 2017.

By Paul Goldfinger, Editor @Blogfinger.net

Scene:  An Ocean Grove corner on a perfect beach day, July 16, 2017. Parking gridlock.  A women drives around and sees no open spaces. She sees a man walking along a long row of cars, looking around.

She:  “Are you leaving?”

He: “I need to find my car first.”

Does this happen?  It sure does.  I saw two befuddled women stymied.  One told me that her car was parked “by the church.”

M  (for me)  “Oh,” I said, “Do you mean the Great Auditorium?”

S  (for she):  “No, I mean the church.”

M:  “Oh. It probably was St. Paul’s Church?”

S:  “Uh, which way is the Ocean?”

M:  “OK, here’s the story. Cross Main Avenue and then walk three blocks to Webb Ave.  You will see the church. The bells are ringing. ”  (Now you know for whom the bell tolls.)

S:   “Thank you, thank you, thank you.”

BLIND BOYS with directions to the “Promised Land.”

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