Oysters with Bacon & Leeks

Ingredients:

  • 20 medium oysters, shucked
  • 1 tablespoon of butter
  • 1 tablespoon all purpose flour
  • 1 cup whipping cream
  • 8 ounces bacon, chopped
  • 4 cups thinly sliced leeks
  • 1 cup finely chopped celery
  • 1 bay leaf
  • pinch cayenne pepper
  • splash dry white wine
  • about 2 tablespoons grated parmesan cheese
  • 1 cup fresh breadcrumbs made from crustless French bread

Directions:

  1. Melt butter in small skillet over medium heat. Add flour; whisk 2 minutes. Add cream slowly and whisk until mixture thickens slightly. Cook for a few minutes stirring lightly. Remove from heat and set aside.
  2. Sauté bacon in heavy large skillet over medium heat until crisp, about 6 minutes. Transfer bacon to paper towels to drain.
  3. Discard all but 2 tablespoons of drippings from skillet. Add leeks, celery, bay leaf, and cayenne to skillet and sauté over medium heat until vegetables are soft, about 12 minutes. Add wine and cook until absorbed, about 15 seconds.
  4. Add cream mixture and bring to simmer. Stir until leek mixture thickens slightly, about 3 minutes. Stir in bacon and cheese. Season generously with salt and pepper.
  5. Cool slightly. Cover and refrigerate. (Can be made 1 day ahead).
  6. Place 1 oyster on each of 20 oyster shells or ramekins. Top oyster in each shell with 2 tablespoons leek mixture. Place on rimmed baking sheet. Cover and chill. (Can be made 4 hours ahead).
  7. Preheat oven to 500°F.
  8. Divide breadcrumbs among shells or ramekins. Bake until leek mixture bubbles and crumbs are golden, about 8 minutes.