Oyster Patties

image Oyster Patties
In the not-too-distant past, oyster patties were a New Orleans party staple. The dainty, buttery, oyster-studded pastries made the rounds at weddings, luncheons, and holiday get-togethers, flying off serving platters and delighting hungry guests.
these festive hors d’oeuvres never went out of style. Also known as oysters vol-au-vent, Earthy sage and smoky bacon update version of the classic dish, while flaky puff pastry delivers an air of elegance. Serve these before Christmas dinner or pass them around as an appetizer at your next Mardi Gras party. Your guests will love them.

Oysters Patties
Serves 24

Ingredients
* ¾ pound bacon, chopped
* 2 cups finely chopped yellow onion
* ¼ cup minced garlic
* 6 tablespoons all-purpose flour
* 1 quart fresh oysters, drained (reserve oyster liquor)
* 2 cups heavy whipping cream
* 2 bay leaves
* 1 tablespoon chopped fresh sage
* 1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme
* ¼ cup minced fresh flat-leaf parsley
* ¼ cup grated Pecorino Romano cheese
* ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
* ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
* 1 teaspoon kosher salt
* 24 (3-inch round) frozen puff pastry shells, cooked according to package directions, pastry tops reserved*
* Garnish: chopped green onion
Instructions
1. In a 12-inch skillet, add bacon, and heat over medium heat, stirring often, until crisp; let drain on paper towels. Transfer drippings to a heatproof measuring cup.*
2. In the same skillet, add 1/2 cup bacon drippings, and heat over medium-high heat. Add onion and garlic, and cook, stirring often, until onion is lightly browned. Add flour, and cook, whisking constantly, until roux is tan. Whisk in 2 cups oyster liquor,* cream, bay leaves, sage, and thyme. Bring to a boil over high heat, whisking constantly and scraping the bottom and sides of the skillet.
3. Add oysters, bacon, parsley, cheese, and peppers. Turn off heat, and stir until edges of oysters curl. Remove from heat; remove bay leaves, and season to taste with salt.
4. Fill shells with oyster mixture, and add pastry top; garnish with green onion, if desired. Serve warm.
Notes
* *We used Pepperidge Farm Puff Pastry Shells. If bacon drippings do not yield 1/2 cup, add melted butter. If oyster liquor does not yield

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