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Spicy Oyster Stew - from Comeaux's Louisiana Bar & Grill

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Cuisine: Cajun Main Dish Stew

From the Menu Of . . . Comeaux's Louisiana Bar & Grill
9925 Haynes Bridge Road, Alpharetta

Q: My husband and I really enjoy dining at Comeaux's. On one visit the soup of the day was oyster stew. It was very spicy, and the flavor was fabulous.
-- Carolynn Andrew, Atlanta

A: Mark Comeaux was an engineer from Lafayette, La. He came to Atlanta in 1987 and followed his heart's desire -- to own a restaurant that served up the authentic Cajun food he loved.

Hands on time: 10 minutes  Total time: 40 minutes  Serves: 8


    1/4 pound (1 stick) butter
    1 tablespoon minced garlic
    1 medium onion, finely chopped
    1 medium carrot, finely diced
    2 tablespoons Cajun seasoning, plus more to taste
    2 pints oysters (with liquor), drained and liquor reserved
    1 quart seafood stock (see Note)
    1 (10-ounce) can Rotel tomatoes, pureed
    1 quart half-and-half
    1/4 cup white wine or brandy
    Garlic croutons


In a large (2-gallon) stockpot, melt butter over medium-high heat. Add garlic, onion and carrot and cook, stirring constantly, until onions are translucent. Add 2 tablespoons Cajun seasoning and stir to combine. Add oyster liquor, seafood stock and tomatoes and bring to a simmer. Cook 10 minutes. Add half-and-half and bring back to a simmer. Add oysters and cook until their edges begin to curl. Add wine or brandy and adjust seasoning to taste. Serve at once in hot soup bowls garnished with croutons, green onions, parsley and paprika.
Note: It is not difficult to make your own seafood stock. This method makes about 2 1/2 quarts. Use 1 quart for this recipe and freeze the remainder. Place about 2 pounds fish heads and/or bones and/or shrimp shells in a large pot with some trimmings from onions, celery and carrots in 3 quarts water, or enough to cover. Bring to a boil and simmer 35 to 45 minutes. Strain.
Instant soup base called Better Than Bouillon, available at Harry's Farmers Market and other stores, is an acceptable substitute. It comes in shrimp, lobster or seafood varieties.
To garnish: chopped green onion tops, chopped fresh parsley and paprika


Per serving: 401 calories (percent of calories from fat, 62), 17 grams protein, 16 grams carbohydrates, 1 gram fiber, 28 grams fat, 160 milligrams cholesterol, 1,003 milligrams sodium.

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