Oyster Stew with Caviar
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 1/2 teaspoons very finely chopped shallot
- 1 leek, white and pale-green parts only, cut into 2-inch julienne, rinsed well
- Coarse salt and freshly ground white pepper
- 1 medium red potato, cut into 1/4-inch dice
- 1 dozen shucked fresh oysters
- 1 cup half-and-half
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 3 tablespoons mascarpone cheese
- Creme fraiche, for serving
- 4 teaspoons caviar or salmon roe
- 1/3 cup strained oyster liquor
Melt butter in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add shallot; cook, stirring, 1 minute. Add leek; cook, stirring, until soft, about 2 minutes more. Stir in 1 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.
Add potato, and cook, stirring occasionally, 5 minutes (do not color). Stir in oyster liquor, half-and-half, and cream. Simmer until potatoes are almost tender, 8 to 10 minutes. Add oysters, and gently simmer until edges of oysters are ruffled and potatoes are tender, 3 to 5 minutes.
Remove from heat. Stir in mascarpone; season with salt and pepper. Divide among bowls. Top each with a dollop of creme fraiche and 1 teaspoon caviar.