Oyster Stew Recipe - New England Style Oyster Stew Video
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Video:New England-Style Oyster Stew

with Rich Vellante

Savor the taste of this traditional oyster stew, straight from New England to your kitchen. A simple, yet elegant recipe, you can whip up oyster stew in no time!See Transcript

Transcript:New England-Style Oyster Stew

My name's Rich Vellante, Executive Chef from Legal Sea Foods in Boston MA, for About.com Food. And today we are going to show you an old New England classic - and it oyster stew.

Oyster Stew Ingredients

  • 2 tbsp. butter
  • 2 tbsp. leeks
  • 1 tbsp. celery
  • 5 shucked oysters in liquid
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 tsp. chives
  • salt and pepper to taste

Prepare the Leeks

The simple ingredients based off of colonial times is - we have some vegetables here is we have celery and we have leeks. And I wanted to show you first off in this dish we are going to use the white part of this. And so well do is we will cut it at an angle and Ill cut the certain sizes that we want and I will Julianne this. What I will do is then put this in some water and let the dirt fall to the bottom.

Soften the Vegetables

I'm going to get my pan started. The first step that we'll do is to soften the celery and the leeks. I'll start out here by adding a little bit of butter and well soften the butter up and then add the vegetables. As you see we are slowly softening the celery and leeks on the pan.

As I am building the flavor profile it is important that we salt and pepper it at different times. You can use white pepper or black pepper. I have chosen to use black pepper. And as you can see this is slowly slowly cooking. And the whole object here is to soften - we are looking to soften the vegetables.

Open the Oysters

So these are the oysters, and this is the oyster knife. There is a little hinge in the back here. And what I'll do is, I'll hit it like this to stun it a little bit and let it know I'm coming at it. And there is a hinge in the back that you just open up.

Now, it is important to not let all the juices come out of it. You have to run your knife along the top end. What I have is the oyster, and I am saving the juices, and it is important to get all of the liquor in there.

Cook the Oyster Stew

The key is you want to use all of the juice and you put that in and slowly just let it meld together. Now that I have established a little bit of temperature, I am going to add the cream. Now this part is the most important part, is just making sure that we meld all the flavors together and slowly bring it up to a little bit of a simmer. We really don't want to boil it; we just want o heat it all the way through. The oysters are very, very sensitive.

Garnish the Oyster Stew

Turn the heat off and it will gently continue to cook. And I'll add the stew to the bowl. To finish this off, Ill add a little bit of chopped chives to it. It is important when cooking chives that you are not just bruising them but slicing them. Sprinkle them on and add some oyster crackers for added texture.

And there you have it: oyster stew. Very simple, yet very elegant. Thanks for watching. To learn more, visit us on the Web at food.about.com.
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