Oyster Stuffing With Apple, Celery Root, and Guinness
Back when oysters nearly paved the coasts of New England, the abundant and inexpensive shellfish made it into dishes from soups and stews to pies—even turkey stuffing. Chris Stam, a New England native, pays tribute to this American tradition with his own. Read more about Stam’s Thanksgiving family traditions here.
Serves 6 to 8
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 3 slices thick-cut, double smoked bacon, roughly chopped
- 1 medium onion, diced
- 2 stalks celery, diced
- 1 small carrot, diced
- 1 small celery root (about 4 ounces), peeled and diced
- Salt and freshly ground white pepper
- 1 granny smith apple, cut into 1/2 inch chunks
- 3 tablespoons Guinness beer
- 25 oysters, scrubbed and freshly shucked, reserved in their liquor
- 2 cups unsalted chicken broth
- 4 leaves sage, chopped
- 2 sprigs fresh thyme, leaves only, chopped
- 1 pound sourdough bread croutons, roughly cut into 1-2 inch chunks
Heat the olive oil in a large shallow saucepan over medium heat. Add the bacon and render the fat for about 2 minutes, then add the onion, celery, carrot, and celery root, season with salt and pepper, and cook about 5 minutes. Add the apple and continue cooking 5 minutes. Once the vegetables are tender, add the Guinness, then the oyster liquor (keep the oysters on the side), followed by the chicken broth; bring to a simmer. Add the herbs, oysters, salt and pepper, and after one minute, the bread croutons. Remove from the heat and fold gently to moisten the bread. Once all the croutons have absorbed the liquid (they will continue to soften, but you shouldn’t have any dry pieces), transfer to casserole or gratin dish. This can be done the day before and cooled overnight.
To serve, preheat the oven to 375 degrees F, cover the stuffing with foil, and bake for 30 minutes. Remove the foil and brown the top another 15 minutes.
Recipe courtesy of Chris Stam