10-16 oz jarred oysters
¼ pound hickory smoked bacon, cut into ¼-inch strips (5-6 pieces)
1 medium onion, diced
1 large stalk of celery, diced
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
½ cup flour
2 cups fish broth or clam juice
1 stick unsalted butter
3 medium red potatoes, diced
2 cups of half and half
½ tsp Cayenne pepper
¼ cup parsley, chopped
Salt & Pepper to taste
1. Drain oysters, cut in half or quarters (depends on size of oysters). Set aside until end.
2. In a large pot, cook the bacon over moderately high heat, stirring, until browned, about 5 minutes. Pour out all but 2 tablespoons of the bacon fat in the pot.
3. Add the celery, onion, potatoes, and garlic, cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, about 10 minutes. Add the fish stock and bring to a simmer.
4. In a medium saucepan, melt the butter. Add the flour and cook over moderate heat, stirring, until the roux is light brown about 5 minutes. Scrape the roux into the soup and bring to a boil until the soup has thickened, about 10 minutes. Stir in the half and half, season with salt, pepper, and cayenne pepper, return to a simmer. If too thick add more half and half as needed.
5. Add the oysters and bacon to the soup and simmer until the oysters are cooked, about 3 minutes. Top with fresh parsley and serve oyster chowder!