Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Maryland Oyster Stew Recipe

This past weekend I traveled from Texas to my home state of Maryland in order to celebrate the life of my beloved grandmother.  In addition to visiting with my extended family at my Mommmom's funeral, going to see Twilight with my BFF, and hanging out with my adorable nieces, I got to enjoy some scrumptious Eastern Shore of Maryland food.

When my mother asked me what I wanted to eat while I was home, I remembered that November is a month with the letter 'r' and then requested oyster stew and oyster fritters.  Although imported and canned oysters are available year round now, I still believe in the old guideline which was to only eat oysters in a month that contains a letter 'r'.  The cold water temperatures guarantee fresh and safe oysters.  My mom was glad to make me a pot of the stew and my dad searched the newspaper until he found an ad for a oyster fritter dinner.  Chesapeake Bay oysters are one of my favorite foods and one that I cannot find down here in Texas.

Oyster stew is ridiculously easy to prepare once all of the ingredients are gathered.  My mom started preparing this stew by pouring the fresh oysters and their liquor, which is the liquid that comes from inside the oyster shell, into a pan.  Then she simmered them over medium high heat until the liquid came to a boil.  When the edges of the oysters curled up she poured in whole milk, added a few pats of butter, and seasoned it with salt and pepper.  Of course, she served it with a big bowl of oyster crackers.  Oyster Stew is super easy, yet so delicious especially when enjoyed on a damp and chilly November evening with people that you love.

Oyster Stew Recipe

1 pint fresh oysters in liquor
1 quart whole milk
1/4 cup butter
salt and pepper
oyster crackers

  1. Pour fresh oysters and their liquor into a soup pan.
  2. Bring to a slow boil over medium high heat.
  3. Cook, stirring frequently, until the edges of the oysters begin to curl.
  4. Pour in milk.
  5. When milk is heated add butter and heat until butter is melted.
  6. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  7. Sever with oyster crackers.

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Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Chocolate Silk Pie Recipe

Oh my, just what my Thanksgiving needs, another pie!  Currently my pie list is as long as the entire rest of the menu, but there is always room for one more delicious pie.  This year my in-laws are coming to visit for the week of Thanksgiving and we don't just bake pies to have for dessert on turkey day.  We also prepare for a Thanksgiving Eve slice of pie after a long day of prep cooking,  a piece of cold pie for breakfast on Black Friday with a cup of coffee, and another portion of pie to serve after my famous Leftover Turkey Sandwich.  There are so many ways to enjoy pie, especially at Thanksgiving!

The newest addition to my family's pie list is Chocolate Silk Pie.  My mother lovingly cut this recipe out from her All You magazine and mailed it to me back in October of 2007.  Although it has taken me four years to get around to actually making this pie, it was worth the wait.  I prepared it on Sunday and all six of my family members tried it and love it!

The recipe from the magazine states that this Chocolate Silk Pie is very similar to the French Silk Pie which is a family favorite at many Bob Evans Restaurants and now I know why.   It is creamy and smooth with an intense chocolate flavor which is complimented with the fresh whipped cream.  Surprisingly one of the ingredients is melted miniature marshmallows which adds the luscious consistency of the pie filling.  Instead of chopped bittersweet chocolate, I used dark chocolate chips which added to the ease of preparation for this pie.  I also used a ready made chocolate crust although I hope to make one from scratch Thanksgiving.

In addition, to expanding my pie repertoire and preparing a treat for my family, I was also motivated to prepare this Chocolate Silk Pie because it is time for Tidy Mom's "Love the Pie Party".  Tidy Mom is a fellow blogger who is sponsoring a link party which will feature prizes and pies - lots of inspiring pies!  I'll be linking up this delicious Chocolate Silk Pie Recipe.  Hop on over, be inspired, and add another pie or two to your Thanksgiving Menu.

Chocolate Silk Pie
     from All You (October 26, 2007)

7 ounces chocolate sandwich cookies (about 17 cookies)
4 Tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
     (or 1 ready made chocolate pie crust)

2 cups heavy cream, divided
8 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, chopped
     or 8 ounces of dark chocolate chips
2 cups miniature marshmallows
3 Tablespoons sifted unsweetened cocoa powder
1 Tablespoon sugar

  1. If making chocolate crust, preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Grind cookies in a food processor.  Mix in butter until crumbs are moistened.  Press into a 9 inch pie pan.  Chill for 15 minutes.  Bake until set, 10 to 12 minutes.  Let cool on a wire rack.
  2. For pie filling, in a saucepan over medium-low heat, stir 1/4 cup heavy cream, chocolate, and marshmallows until smooth, about 5 minutes.  Stir constantly.  Remove from heat and let cool for 15 minutes.
  3. Whip 1 cup cream until soft peaks form.  Add sifted cocoa; beat a few seconds longer until cocoa is incorporated and stiff peaks form.  Stir a third of whipped cream into cooled chocolate mixture; gently fold chocolate mixture into whipped cream.  Spoon mixture into prepared pie shell; smooth top. 
  4. Chill until set, about 2 hours.
  5. Whip remaining heavy cream with sugar until soft peaks form.  Pipe onto chilled pie.  Serve.

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Saturday, November 12, 2011

Thanksgiving Link Party

Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday!  I love Fall colors, the cooler weather, and, of course, the food.  In addition to planning my own feast, I really like hearing what other people do for turkey day.  What do you do to keep the kids occupied while you prepare, what are your favorite tables decorations, how do you cook that bird, what are your family's traditional side dishes, and how do you utilize the leftovers?  Link up to this Thanksgiving party hosted by "A Holiday Haven".  It's a great way to inspire and be inspired.  Happy Thanksgiving!