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Oyster Rockefeller Soup


2 cups tightly packed fresh spinach

¾ cup unsalted butter

1 cup yellow onion, diced

1 cup celery, diced

1 bay leaf

3 fresh thyme sprigs

1 tablespoon kosher salt, divided

½ teaspoons freshly ground black pepper, divided

1 garlic clove, peeled and minced

⅓ cup all-purpose flour

2 cups heavy cream

1 quart oyster liquor

2 ½ cups roughly chopped Alabama Gulf oysters

⅓ cup Pernod or Herbsaint


  1. Bring a medium saucepan with filled water to a boil. Add fresh spinach and cook for 30 seconds. Remove spinach from the saucepan and drain on a paper towel-lined plate. Squeeze any excess water out of spinach. Finely chop spinach and set aside.
  2. Melt butter in a large Dutch oven over medium heat. Add onion, celery, bay leaf, and thyme and sauté for 5−7 minutes or until softened.
  3. Season the vegetables with 1 teaspoon of the salt and ½ teaspoon of the pepper. Add the garlic and sauté for 1 minute. Add the flour and stir constantly for 1−2 minutes. (Do not let the flour brown.)
  4. Whisk in the cream, oyster liquor, and reserved spinach and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes.
  5. Season with remaining 2 teaspoons salt and 1 teaspoon pepper. Add oysters and cook 5−8 minutes or until oysters are heated through and edges begin to curl.
  6. Remove soup from the heat and stir in Pernod. Serve immediately.
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