Updated: May 24
Step by step oyster cheese log recipe with pictures below.
I learned how to cook from the Pioneer Woman early on in college and appreciated more than anything the fact that her cooking came with pictures. I'm one of those people that asks, "is this how it's supposed to look?", the entire way through the cooking process! I've used her cookbooks and online resources ever since, broadening my recipe horizons of course, but I liked her way before she ever became popular when she was just writing blog posts about how her city life turned country when she fell in love with her husband. I always found that comforting because my life went in reverse, country life turned city when I went to college and then found my husband. Have you ever seen Julie & Julia? Yeah, doing that with the Pioneer Woman is on my bucket list but in the meantime as I learn to live liturgically + build traditions, some of them having to do with cooking and baking, I thought that I would share some step by step recipes.
It's Christmas Eve's Eve and I just completed an early Feast of Seven Fishes dinner for our parish's liturgy committee appreciation dinner. This is a tradition that my in-laws introduced me to while my husband and I were just dating and I have enjoyed it ever since. Growing up we ate lots of fish, we spent many days out on the bay, and as a child I loved going fishing, so sitting down at a buffet of fish made my heart flutter a little bit. The tradition has its roots in Southern Italy and is more commonly known as The Vigil (La Vigilia). On Christmas Eve, the eve of a major feast day, Catholics are to abstain from meat but what's an Italian dinner without lots of delicious options?
Here was the buffet display and wine table that I pulled together for the party. Moral of this story is to plan the dinner around the feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe so you have lots and lots of gorgeous flower arrangements. You're going to have to forgive the non blog worthy, perfectly touched up photos. The truth is that is just something that I hate spending my time doing, I get antsy and I'd rather be out living than making you think that my life looks perfectly retouched all the time on the internet, so welcome to my real life.
Our party consisted of about 20 people and I still ended up with too much food, proportions are an art which I have yet to master. I tried to do more cold serving dishes because cooking that many fish recipes in the parish kitchen was going to come with some difficulties so I did most of my cooking and prepping the night before in the comfort of my home and jammies! Here is the menu that I chose and of course added extra things here and there, fruit and cheese platters, a small side of chicken Parmesan for the folks that can't do that much fish, side salads, bread...the usual!
1. Oyster Cheese Log & Crackers
2. Crab Dip & Bread
3. Smoked Salmon
4. Shrimp Platter
5. Tuna Pasta Salad
6. Lemon Butter Scallops
7. Red Clam Sauce
I have made the Oyster Cheese Log two years in a row and it is always a hit as an appetizer with white wine or champagne.
In true Pioneer Woman style, here's the cast of characters.
3 packages (8 ounces each) cream cheese, softened
2 tablespoons steak sauce
1/4 cup Mayonnaise
1 garlic clove, peeled and minced
1 small onion, finely chopped
2 cans (3-3/4 ounces each) smoked oysters, well-drained and chopped
3 cups chopped pecans
3 tablespoons chili powder
Minced fresh parsley
Finely chop 1 small onion and 1 clove of garlic, 2 cloves if you're like me.
In your mixer combine 3 packages of cream cheese, 2 tablespoons steak sauce, 1/4 cup mayonnaise, 1 small onion, and 1-2 cloves garlic.
Give it a twirl.
Now for the 2 cans smoked oysters! Peel off the lid and drain into the sink and lay them out on a cutting board. Pat them down very well until they are just barely moist.
Chop them up finely and put them into the cream cheese mix that should still be hanging out in your mixer.
Then chop up 1 cup of pecans and toss that in there too, now blend! Once it's all nicely mixed in together, dump out your mixture and roll them into two even logs. Give them a little pat and send them on their way to chill in the fridge.
Back to the cutting board. Chop the other 2 cups of pecans, sprinkle in 2-3 tablespoons of chili powder, and minced parsley to your liking.
Smooth the pecans, chili powder, and parsley out over the cutting board and bring out the chilled logs to be dressed.
Roll each one in the mixture, set up a plate, and sprinkle a bit more parsley on top for a job well done!
& Merry Christmas Y'all!