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Oysters Rockefeller [UPDATED]

Published 12:13pm Wednesday, November 28, 2012 Updated 12:13pm Wednesday, November 28, 2012

The holiday season arrives and so do the oysters! For my family and many others,  oysters are a holiday tradition – they may take many different forms: oyster stew, raw oysters, oyster shots, but one of our favorite presentations is Oysters Rockefeller. It sounds fancy and it is, but not difficult. They can be used as an appetizer, or a light meal for two. The liquid that oysters are packed in is called the “liquor” — another reason oysters are so special!  Happy Holidays!

Oysters Rockefeller
Appetizer for 4-6 or a  light dinner for two

2 dozen large oysters with their “liquor” (juice), about a pint
1 (8 oz.) bottle clam juice
3 T. butter
3 T. flour
1 cup minced onion
1 T. fish sauce (you remember I made you buy it for the IGC article on Seafood Chowder??)
1 T. chopped garlic
1 (9 oz.) bag fresh spinach, finely chopped
1 T. Anisette liqueur
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
1/2 cup bread crumbs

Preheat oven to 400°. Drain oysters in sieve RESERVING the liquor. Poach drained oysters in a little water for about a minute. Drain oysters and reserve water to add to other liquids if needed. Combine clam juice, reserved oyster liquor and reserved poaching water  - you will need about 3 cups liquid total (add water or milk to make up the difference if needed). Melt butter, add onions, cook 4 minutes. Add flour, cook another 3-4 minutes until thickened. Add fish sauce, clam/oyster liquor mixture, garlic and spinach, cook until thick, simmer 5 minutes. Remove from heat, add anisette. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Spray a baking dish (or two small ovenproof dishes) with oil, arrange drained oysters in bottom of dish. Season w/salt and pepper. Pour sauce over top, mix cheese and bread crumbs, sprinkle over sauce. Bake 12-15 minutes until bubbly and brown. Serve with crusty bread or crackers.

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