Make the best oyster stew by using fresh ingredients such as shucked oysters, onions, celery and whole milk. Add spices such as garlic, black pepper and parsley to enhance the stew's flavor.
To make Emeril Lagasse's recipe for oyster stew, shuck 2 dozen oysters and drain, reserving the liquid. Melt 4 tablespoons butter in a large pan, and add 2 tablespoons flour. Stir the butter and flour mixture constantly while cooking for three to four minutes. Add 1 cup chopped onions and 1/2 cup chopped celery and continue cooking for two minutes. Stir in 2 cups milk and reserved oyster liquid.
Add salt, black pepper and cayenne pepper to taste and heat to a simmer. Continue cooking for three to four minutes, and then add in 2 dozen oysters, 1 tablespoon chopped garlic and 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley. Allow liquid to simmer again and cook another three to four minutes until the oysters curl. Stir in 2 tablespoons of butter and remove from heat.
If shucking live oysters at home for oyster stew, make sure all of the oyster shells are tightly closed, which ensures freshness. Scrub oysters with a stiff brush while rinsing under water and protect your hand with a towel or rubber glove before opening oyster shells.