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Oyster Bisque

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This delectable dish is a Creole classic from New Orleans. 
Serves 8 

 4 cups of just-thawed Pacific oysters 
 3 cups fish, chicken, or vegetable stock 
 3 stalks finely chopped celery 
 1 stick butter 
 1/2 cup flour 
 2 Tbsp thyme 
 3 medium Idaho potatoes, peeled, cubed and blanched 
 1 bunch thinly sliced green onions 
 2 cups medium cream (or half-and-half) 
1 tsp saffron or turmeric powder 
 Salt, pepper, and/or hot sauce (e.g., Tabasco) to taste 
  • Poach oysters. Drain, reserving the liquid and chop the oysters coarsely. 
  •  Melt butter, add flour and cook until blonde roux stage. Add celery and sauté until translucent. Add all the stock, whisking all together. Add thyme and bring mixture to a boil. 
  •  After boiling for 3 minutes, reduce to a simmer and cook covered for 25 minutes. 
  •  10 minutes before serving, add finely sliced green onions and chopped oysters. 
  •  After 4 minutes, reduce heat to lowest setting for 1 minute, add the cream and the saffron (or turmeric powder) and cook for 4 minutes. (Do NOT allow the bisque to boil after adding the cream.) Serve hot with French bread.
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