“Oysters are the most tender and delicate of all seafoods. They stay in bed all day and night. They never work or take exercise, are stupendous drinkers, and wait for their meals to come to them.”
~ Hector Bolitho 'The Glorious Oyster' (1960)
1 quart oysters (drained and chopped ~ reserve liquid)
1/2 cup unsalted butter
3 minced plump garlic cloves
1 cup chopped green onions
1 cup chopped celery
1/2 cup chopped red pepper
2 (14-oz) cans drained artichoke hearts
3 Tbsp. flour
1 1/2 quarts organic chicken broth
1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper or to taste
sea salt & white pepper to taste
1 Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp. fresh chopped thyme
1/3 cup sherry
1-2 cups half & half
3 Tbsp. chopped fresh parsley
- In heavy stockpot, melt butter and saute garlic, green onion, celery, and red pepper until wilted and tender, about 5 minutes. Add artichokes.Sprinkle mixture with flour and stir to coat. Gradually whisk in stock, stirring constantly until white roux is achieved.
- Season with cayenne, salt & white pepper, Worcestershire sauce and thyme. Bring to low boil and simmer covered for 30 minutes.
- Add chopped oysters, oyster liquor, sherry and parsley. Simmer for 10 minutes but do not allow bisque to boil. Stir in half & half. Taste and adjust seasoning.
- At this point, since soup improves with age, you may cool and refrigerate. Before serving, heat bisque gently over low heat. (8 servings)
WHITE MUSHROOM SALAD with DIJON TARRAGON DRESSING
~ This simple salad, adapted from SALADS, deserves only the 'whitest' and 'freshest' cultivated mushrooms.
1 1/2 lbs. clean white cultivated mushrooms
(caps tightly closed around stem)
1 cup diagonally sliced chopped celery
1 Tbsp. lemon juice
freshly ground black pepper to taste
Trim ends off mushrooms and thickly slice from cap through stem. Place in salad bowl with chopped celery and sprinkle with lemon juice. Season lightly with salt & pepper. Toss gently with dressing until well-coated. Serve at once.
DIJON TARRAGON DRESSING
3 Tbsp. Dijon dressing
1 Tbsp. fresh chopped tarragon leaves (1 1/2 tsp dried)
2 Tbsp. white balsamic vinegar
4-6 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
coarse salt & white pepper to taste
Whisk Dijon, chopped tarragon and vinegar together, slowly adding olive oil until incorporated. Lightly season with salt and generous amount of white pepper. Allow to rest in refrigerator before serving.