Friday, January 28, 2011

Weekend Oyster Feast

 A little horseradish - a fresh lemon - a few soda crackers - all that's missing is the oysters!

The sea shell is a banded tulip- one of my favorite shells!

The boys worked hard with their friend Austin (far right) harvesting and shucking fresh oysters for a weekend treat. Captain Daddy stores them in a cooler full of cold water and ice to keep them fresh.

 When I was growing up in Orlando, we used to have oyster stew on a regular basis after a family day out on the boat. It is a tradition I am so happy to be sharing with my boys! My parents made good 'ole fashioned oyster stew with whole milk, canned milk, a little butter, a couple of cans of oysters, including some of the juice from the oysters, and then salt and pepper to taste.

Another of my families "Florida winter"  favorites is a hearty bowl of potato soup.
With the recent cold fronts that have made their way across the Gulf Coast, I was inspired to revive those old traditions, but with a twist- I combined the two recipes and we LOVED the result!

(If you can't get the fresh oysters- just substitute with canned.)
Wash and chop 10-15 large red potatoes about an inch cubed- boil in a large pot of water until just soft. Drain potatoes, set aside about 2 cups- and add the rest back to the pot with 2 tbs. butter (or butter substitute- we used Smart Balance)
Salt and pepper potatoes and add 1 can of milk. (we used Carnation) Simmer for 5 minutes.

Add 4 cups milk- whole or 2% with another 2 tbs. butter. Add 1 whole chopped onion. (we used sweet onions and 2% milk) Salt and pepper to taste.

Add as much milk as required to fit the amount of servings you need. I made a full large pot (pictured above) and used about 1/2 gallon of milk, plus the can of Carnation.

Simmer slowly until stew begins to thicken. Scoop a ladle full of hot milk into a cup and mix in 2- 3 tbs. of flour or corn starch until lumps dissipate. Add to pot to help thicken the stew. Cook for 15 minutes. Be sure to keep the stew stirred so the milk doesn't stick and burn on the bottom of the pot.

Add reserved potatoes back into stew. Add oysters and juice of oysters  (partial juice if using canned oysters). Salt and pepper to taste. Simmer for about 10 minutes before serving.

- if desired: add shredded cheese on top, fresh chives, crumbled bacon for "loaded" potato and oyster stew

It's so good, my daddy would say "it'll make your tounge slap your brains out" - just take my word for it, that's good!


Bonnie said...

I am many years away from raising a child, but I am enjoying your stories. xo said...

thankyou Bonnie!

kelli said...

Oh wow, that sounds awesome. I love potato soup and I really love fresh oysters steamed on the half shell. So perhaps I would love the stew as well. Your Dad's saying is great, my dad had many saying too about how good something was. One of my favorites was, "It will make a tomcat spit in a bulldog's face". This is your swap buddy and I am really really enjoying your blog. You have such cherished moments to blog about. Perhaps we may all have these wonderful moments in our lives, but you make them good to hear. I guess I am saying you are a really good story teller.