- 4 ounces white bread, cubed
- olive oil
- 36 Wellfleet oysters, scrubbed well and rinsed with cold water
- olive oil
- 1 large leek, washed and diced small
- 6 ounces apple wood smoked bacon, diced small
- 1/2 pint heavy cream
- 12 ounces aged sherry wine
- 4 teaspoons unsalted Vermont butter
- 1 tablespoon smoked paprika
- kosher salt and black pepper to taste
- 2 tablespoons fresh thyme leaves
- Preheat the oven to 300 degrees.
- Toss the cubes of white bread in enough olive oil to coat and toast on a sheet pan in the preheated oven until they are golden brown, about ten minutes.
- Open the oysters carefully, being careful not to puncture the delicate meat inside the shell. Save all the liquid from inside the oyster shell and set it aside with the meat.
- In a sauce pan, heat up a bit of the olive oil on medium-low heat and add the leeks and bacon. Sauté, stirring frequently until the leeks are soft and the bacon is a bit crispy.
- Add the sherry and allow it to simmer for 4-5 minutes until it reduces by two thirds.
- Add the heavy cream and bring to a simmer. Then, add the oysters and oyster liquid, and bring the mixture back to a simmer. Season with salt, pepper and thyme to taste.
- Ladle the soup into four soup crocks, top with a little spoon of butter, croutons and a little sprinkle of smoked paprika. Serve immediately.