~ OMG! IT'S 01/01/2008 ALREADY~
GET THAT FUR OUTTA YOUR MOUTH BOYS!
... IT'S A BRAND NEW YEAR !
IT'S TIME FOR VODKA & MARYLAND OYSTER STEW
photography by Wilbur M. Reeling
CLICK PHOTOS FOR FULL VIEWMy Maryland family has some EASTERN SHORE traditions that I really like.
Maryland Oyster Stew on New Year's Day is one. A Red Snapper is another.
When the New Year's Eve Celebration hangover-dog bites you on the ass, here is exactly what to do.
We drink a straight-up (sans ice) frozen Polish, triple distilled, 80 proof, Potato Vodka called "LUKSUSOWA" ... add some chilled Sacramento T. J., splash over a bit of Original Louisiana® Hot Sauce, a dash of Lea & Perrin's, (did you know (L&P) it's made from fermented anchovies?) spoon in a bit of fresh horseradish, then crush a touch of black pepper and a tiny bit of fleur de sel.
[BUT NO BEATING IT UP OR SHAKING IT, STIRRING IT OR IN ANY WAY BLENDING THE SEPARATE FLAVORS SO A SEPARATE TASTE OF EACH INGREDIENT WILL COME THROUGH AFTER YOU'VE GULPED. THAT'S IMPORTANT!]
After you'd made it and you are ready to drink, just down the whole 6 oz. thing in one gulp. If you make a 12 oz. cocktail then it becomes a nurse's drink, a lil girls sipper and what you need is a hammering gulper to snap you back to reality.
Hence the name Red Snapper. We call this a Ms. Mary's Quintessential Red Snapper.
The original Bloody Mary has some garden stuff that we don't like. Say no to lime salted rims, slices or wedges of lemon or lime, no ice cubes (dilutes the flavors) and no celery salt? Well, it's just that ... celery salt.
Originally in Europe the drink was called a "Red Rooster" and it was made with GIN, not VODKA, then a "Ruddy Mary" and then a "Red Eye" and finally a "Red Snapper" before Hemingway's famous consumption of these, with a raw egg thrown in, took place in 1921 at Harry's New York Bar in Paris. Made with Gin.
The real reason for the success of the Bloody Mary is when Bartender Peter Petiot, Harry's NY Bar's original famous bartender, took his recipe with him and left to work at a New York City hotel.
Vodka was so cheap that the Russians couldn't give it away and Heinz 57 had just introduced T. J. in a can for the very first time. Mr. Petiot no longer had to run the fresh tomatoes through a hand mill to jus them. He'd pop open a can of Heinz 57 T. J. and pour the dirt cheap Russian Vodka over his other secret ingredients brought from Paris.
BINGO! -- It's all about making money. He used 2¢ worth of products and had the $$ signs in his eyes, so he charged "top-shelf" liquor prices to the rich and famous of the Big Apple and the Vodka Bloody Mary was born.
... the rest is now a New Year's Day dog biting history lesson. Within a matter of minutes the dog bite will disappear and you can make Maryland Oyster Stew.
I make this Maryland Oyster Stew with a dozen "large select oysters" per serving.
1 T. small shallot finely minced
1 T. broad leaf Italian parsley, also minced
1 t. (level) celery seed (not salt)
2 - 3 T. European butter [high end 82% fat]
-- start with med. heat and wilt the shallots
and above items in the butter
*** add the 12 oysters 1/2 Pt. jar of large select)
*** but drain the water off from the Pt. jar
-- the oyster will release it's own oyster jus
when it begins to cook
-- add 1/4 C. heavy cream
*** add when the oyster just starts to curl it's edges
Continue to cook for a few more minutes and
watch the boil does not over cook the oysters.
Total cooking time is only 4 to 5 minutes
from the start of the entire process.
Pour into a warm bowl and crack some black pepper
and French sea salt over the top.IT DOESN'T GET ANY BETTER THAN THIS ...