Creole Oyster Bisque

This is the soup that Julia Child so fondly spoke of in a thank you note to me that I have framed and hung in my kitchen. I realize only now, years later, that it was her lifelong love of oysters that brought her to my dinner. She was seen dipping seconds right out of the pot during dinner!

Place all ingredients above into a heavy-bottomed saucepan. Bring to a boil, then reduce together to ½ volume. Strain the liquid and return to saucepan. Discard the oysters or use for flavoring or stuffing in a other dish. Just before serving add:

Simmer together briefly until heated through and ladle into warm soup bowls. Optional garnish: Float a homemade crouton topped with fresh oyster and chopped green onion on surface of each bowl of soup. Serve immediately.

Makes 6-10 servings.**

* Available in most major grocery stores, or make your own mix of cayenne pepper, garlic powder, salt and dried thyme.

** This is a very rich soup and can also be served as an hors d’eouvres passed in demitasse cups or very small bowls before guests are seated.