- 1 slice of bacon, minced (about 1 tablespoon)
- 2 celery ribs, thinly sliced
- 1 small yellow onion, quartered and thinly sliced
- 1 thyme sprig
- 1 teaspoon sweet paprika
- 3/4 teaspoon Old Bay seasoning
- 1 quart freshly shucked oysters, drained, and 1 1/2 cups of liquor reserved (see Note)
- 1 cup fish stock or clam broth, plus more as needed
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
- 1/2 pound sea scallops
- 1 quart heavy cream
- 1 1/2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
- Freshly ground black pepper
- Snipped chives, for garnish
- Buttered baguette toasts or oyster crackers, for serving
In a large pot, cook the bacon over moderate heat until softened, about 1 minute. Add the celery, onion, thyme, paprika and Old Bay and cook, stirring frequently, until the onion is translucent, about 2 minutes. Add the oyster liquor and fish stock and bring to a boil. Simmer over moderately low heat for about 10 minutes, until reduced by one-fourth.
Meanwhile, in a medium skillet, melt the butter. Season the scallops with salt and cook over high heat until well browned on one side, about 2 minutes; immediately transfer to a plate.
Stir the heavy cream into the pot and simmer until slightly thickened, about 3 minutes. Add the oysters and bring just to a simmer. Add the scallops and simmer for 30 seconds. Remove from the heat, stir in the Worcestershire sauce and season with salt and pepper. Discard the thyme sprig. Spoon the stew into bowls, garnish with chives and serve immediately with the toasts or crackers.
If you don’t have 1 1/2 cups of oyster liquor, add more fish stock to reach the correct amount.