September, October, November, December – and so on until March – have a delicious somethin’-somethin’ in common: each month contains the letter “r.”
Some say you shouldn’t eat oysters in non “r” months. Pshaw, we say.
Every month is a good month for Virginia oysters. And during the colder months we like to enjoy those beautiful bivalves in my Eastern Shore Oyster Stew.
Rich and creamy, oyster stew showcases the oyster quite unlike other dishes. Cooked just enough to heat through, the shellfish remain tender, plump and flavorful, swimming in a soup of milk and cream accented with complimentary spices and seasonings. The process is making this classic Eastern Shore dish is quick and easy, but the rewards are many.
Eastern Shore Oyster Stew
1-1/2 cups milk
1/2 cup cream
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon white pepper
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 pint oysters, with liquor
Flat leaf parsley, chopped
In a large saucepan heat milk, cream, salt, white pepper, nutmeg and cayenne pepper over medium-low heat until hot, stirring occasionally, about 10 minutes.
In a medium saucepan, heat butter over low heat until melted; add oysters and liquor and stir occasionally until edges of oysters begin to curl. Add to milk mixture and cook on medium-low heat about 2 minutes; do not boil. Garnish serving bowls with chopped parsley.
Yields 2 full-sized or 4 appetizer-sized servings