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What else to serve with oyster stew?

My boyfriend's mom loves oyster stew and we are going to make it for her birthday dinner, which happens to fall on Christmas Eve. Right now it's looking like we'll have rolls and/or cornbread, oyster stew, a light salad, and angel food cake for dessert, but it seems like we should have something else. Any thoughts?

Right now I'm leaning towards either a light pasta after the stew or several different finger foods leading up to the stew.

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  1. I love oyster stew too. It's so rich and creamy. If it were being served to me on a special occasion, I suppose I'd enjoy corn on the cob along with the meal. Some fresh fruit that is lightly grilled would go well also. Some sort of a rice side dish , especially if it is prepared with wild rice and maybe some peas would be a nice addition. Your salad & angel food cake are wonderful idea.

    3 Replies
    1. re: i_am_Lois

      I think you have it about right as it is, though I question the cornbread. -- my taste runs more toward baguette with oyster stew. For your salad you might consider Belgian endives with walnuts, pears & a good Roquefort. Champagne is essential with this.

      1. re: rjbh20

        Example of the salad but made with arugula instead of endive. Dressing was a lemon, shallot & tarragon vinaigrette with walnut oil & a touch of honey.

         
      2. re: i_am_Lois

        Christmas oyster season and corn on the cob season do not overlap. Avocados would fit in, though.

      3. Ham pairs very well with Oyster Stew. You could serve Ham Biscuits before or serve a full meal after of Baked Ham, Scalloped Potatoes, Watercress Salad and Biscuits. Like Christmas in Virginia!

        5 Replies
        1. re: chefj

          Absolutely! Ham biscuits with drinks. Then sit down to oyster stew, well-browned cheesy potatoes, and a winter greens salad. Dessert with coffee.

          Must secure ham...

          1. re: ellabee

            These guys make a great Hams
            S. Wallace Edwards & Sons
            Benton’s Smoky Mountain Country Hams

            1. re: chefj

              Heh, we actually were lucky enough to visit Benton's last October. Didn't get any ham on that trip, but we did walk away with 10lbs of that unbelievable bacon and several pounds of sausage.

          2. re: chefj

            hmmm... Since it's a birthday party a fun and delicious (and easy!) way to introduce ham is with those looong skinny imported Italian breadsticks wrapped in paper thin slices of prosciutto, Iberico, or Serrano type ham as an accompaniment to the chowder. These types of ham are VERY low moisture so they won't sog up the bread sticks when made ahead and just sticky enough that the ham stays wrapped, Depending on how formal I'm setting the table, I've served them along side a salad compose right on the salad plate, and I've also served them standing on end in a container like pencils.

            1. re: Caroline1

              I like Caroline 1's idea. Serve a nice salad followed by the chowder, cornbread and accompanying the chowder.

              If you want an appetizer - one of my favorites is just a warmed brie (plain flavored - no additions) till soft, thinly sliced granny smith apples and a warm baquette sliced - let people help themselves. It's delicious, nutritious and irresistible.

              Then follow with the above. People will love it!

          3. A little more color and texture to the meal sounds nice, so maybe some sliced fruit with the angel food cake. Otherwise, more oyster stew and cornbread, please!

            1. I like the finger foods leading up to the stew idea; much easier to do ahead, makes the meal more balanced.

              1. Oyster stew is heavenly and a regular offering in my house. For your gathering, an appetizer plate might be nice for a welcoming. Maybe something like a country pate, shrimp and Parmesan canapes, Liptauer cheese and sliced radish on crackers or spinach balls. Also, which cornbread - northern or southern? Quite different and I agree that baguette or toasted croissants may go better. And I support some fruit coulis or grilled fruit might be a good accompaniment with the angel food cake. Sounds like a winner of a spread!
                CP