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Oysters Rockefeller

Dale Curry
Number of Servings
Serves 6 as appetizer; 3 or 4 as entr/Ne
3 dozen oysters
1 10-oz. package chopped spinach, thawed and pressed dry
1 stick butter
1 bunch green onions, chopped; green and white parts divided
3 stalks celery with tops, chopped with tops divided
1/2 bell pepper, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
10 large leaves fresh basil, chopped
1/2 bunch parsley, leaves only, chopped
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
Several shakes Tabasco
Several shakes Worcestershire
1/3 cup Herbsaint
1/3 cup seasoned breadcrumbs
Drain oysters well, reserving liquid for another use _ such as freezing to use in gumbo. If you are opening live oysters, scrape the oysters off the shells, drain, clean off the flat shell and reserve, and discard the other shell. If buying oysters already shucked, you can place them in a casserole dish and top with Rockefeller sauce, or use clamshells that can be purchased in kitchen stores. Keep oysters and fresh shells refrigerated until time to bake. Meanwhile, thaw spinach and mash it dry in a colander or large strainer. In a large skillet or pot, melt the butter and saut/N the white part of onions, celery and bell pepper until limp. Add garlic, green onion tops and celery tops and saut/N for one minute. Add spinach, basil and parsley and saut/N one minute more. Add Herbsaint, salt and pepper, Tabasco and Worcestershire and simmer for about five minutes. Remove from heat. In a blender, puree half of the mixture until coarsely pureed. Empty into a bowl and coarsely puree the other half. Place in bowl and add breadcrumbs. If using oysters on the half-shells, place a drained oyster on each shell. Mound the sauce over the oysters on the half-shells, or place oysters in a casserole dish and top with Rockefeller sauce. Sprinkle lightly with a little more breadcrumbs and bake in a preheated 400-degree oven for 15 minutes. If oysters are not browning on top, place under the broiler for a minute or two.