Recipes from Bas Rouge

James Beard Finalist Chef Harley Peet shares elevated recipes from his personal collection

Photo by Deb Lindsey

Smoked Oyster Soup with local wild diver oysters lightly smoked with cherrywood, celery onion, bacon, Yukon gold potato, chives and warm milk foam

1 each large yellow onion, diced
1 each whole lemon
4 ribs celery, diced
2-3 Yukon Gold potatoes peeled, med diced
8 oz bacon cut in 1-inch pieces
1 stick unsalted butter
48 oz heavy cream
1/2 cup AP flour
1 pint fresh shucked oysters plus liquid
Old Bay to taste
Salt and pepper to taste

In a heavy bottom pan, render bacon until crispy, remove set aside. Save the rendered fat.
Clean the pan of any dark fond as it will tint the finished soup.

Once clean, melt half the butter and some bacon fat to taste. Add celery, diced potatoes and onions. Sweat out on medium-heat no color or caramelizing till translucent.

Sprinkle flour over sautéed celery and onions and potatoes adding butter if needed to create a roux in the pot with the vegetables. Reduce heat, add heavy cream, and whisk well. Bring to simmer, once thickened and potatoes are cooked – then, add oysters strained of the liquid.

Season to taste with salt, pepper, lemon juice and Old Bay. Bring back to a light simmer to just barely cook the oysters and adjust the consistency with the oyster liquid as desired. CS

Ahi Tuna Tartare

1 # Sashimi Grade Yellowfin or Bluefin Tuna, small dice, held very cold
1 each English cucumber
Salmon roe
1 ounce Kaluga Caviar
Good quality olive oil
Fresh lemon juice with zest
Maldon sea salt
Fresh ground pepper
Crème Fraiche
Finly chopped chives

Small dice tuna removing any silver skin. Sinue and hold very cold, cut cucumber in a 4-inch-long piece and slice thin on a mandolin, then set aside. Slightly thin the creme fraiche with water, season with salt, pepper and chives set aside.

In a cold metal bowl, season the tuna with Maldon salt and pepper to taste. Finish with lemon zest and juice to taste. Shingle three cucumber slices on center of plate, pack the tuna lightly in a PVC ring mold lightly rubbed with olive oil on the inside to prevent sticking — about 1.5 inches tall — and top with caviar.

Lightly push the tuna and caviar out of mold onto the center of cucumber slices using the back of a spoon rubbed with olive oil — to prevent the caviar from sticking. Drizzle the thinned crème fraiche chive sauce around tuna and garnish with salmon or trout roe. Serve with a cracker or something crunchy of your liking. CS

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