Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Oyster Chowder with Butternut and Andouille

Easy weeknight dinner! The oysters take no time to cook and using 2% milk instead of the usual heavy cream makes this dish a great choice when you want a lot of flavor with little effort. Plus, the hidden vegetables make for a deeper flavor and even more health benefits!
Oyster Chowder with Butternut and Andouille

5-6 medium Oysters, shucked - with liquid
2 Smoked Turkey Andouille links, diced
1 cup Butternut Squash, diced
1 medium Yellow Onion, diced
2 Garlic cloves
1 Carrot, finely diced
1 Celery stalk, finely diced
3-4 fresh Sage leaves
1 cup Water
3 cups 2% Milk
Salt and Pepper to taste
1/3 cup Flour
2 Tbs Olive Oil

Saute the Butternut Squash, Onion, Celery, Garlic, Sage and Sausage in a large pot until they start to form their own juices. Add in the water and cook on medium high until half has evaporated and the Butternut Squash starts to break apart. (This is like a "whole vegetable" stock...why just use the broth when you can have the flavor and heartiness of the veggies too!) Add in the Milk, Salt, Pepper and Oysters with their liquid (called liquor). Bring the mixture to a light simmer. In a separate bowl, combine the Flour and Olive Oil to form a thin paste. Stir the paste into the chowder a tablespoon at a time until it is the desired thickness. By this time, the oysters will be done (overcooking them makes them tough). A little extra fresh-cracked black pepper right before serving makes it deliciously spicy!

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