I've once again fallen delinquent in my posting. It's not so much that I haven't been cooking as much as the fact that I've been cooking without recipes, or more precisely that I've been cooking and not documenting the recipes. Part of it has been because it takes more time to measure out and document stuff, and part of it has been because the things I've been making (mostly Japanese) involve ingredients that most people probably don't have lying around. I know that there's nothing worse than seeing something that looks good and then realizing you'll need to plunk down $50 in "exotic" ingredients to make it, or worse yet, that the ingredients aren't even available in your area.
So I'll leave it up to you. Leave a comment if you think I should blog about dishes that I make even if it means it doesn't come with an exact recipe. I'll post photos, maybe even talk about what went into it, but there won't be any proportions or recipe to speak of. If enough people want it I'll bring it;-)
Today's recipe came together from random items in the fridge and some oysters I picked up today. It has a lot more vegetables than a traditional oyster stew, but I like the variety of texture and the sweetness the veggies impart. If you want it to be more about the oysters, you could omit the butternut squash and strain the stew before you add the roux.
I also used soymilk because that's what was in the fridge (and it was surprisingly creamy), but if you feel like this is sacrilege, by all means, swap out the soy milk for real milk. If you wanna go for the full coronary, you could even add a bit of cream at the end.
This would also work well with some diced fennel in the moir poix, or with a splash of Pernod at the end. You could also add other seafood, like clams, shrimp or fish if you wanted to. I was also thinking that it would make a great filling for a pot pie, but you'd probably have to refrigerate the filling and put the oysters into the pie raw before going into the oven to prevent them from overcooking.
- To make the moir poix, saute the carrots, celery and onion in a tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat. It should be soft and fragrant, but not brown. Add the mushrooms, butternut squash and bay leaves and continue to saute another 4-5 minutes.
- Turn up the heat and add the sherry, cook until the alcohol has burned off then add the soymilk, salt, sage, and black pepper. Turn down the heat to medium low and and simmer until the butternut squash is cooked.
- In a separate pan, make a roux. Melt the butter then add the flour, cook until the two are well incorporated and the flour is cooked but not brown (about a minute or two). When the butternut squash is cooked, ladle some of the liquid from the stew into the roux and whisk until smooth. Pour this back into the stew and gently stir together making sure there are no clumps of roux.
- To finish, add the fava beans and cook for about 2 minutes. Then add the oysters and liquor and cook until the oysters start curling around the edges (make sure you don't overcook them, or they will get tough). Serve immediately with a thick slice of crusty bread.