It’s the time of year when I become incredibly nostalgic. I was married in the fall. I love the changing of seasons and the crisp air. My mom also went to meet Jesus in the month of October. For these reasons, I enjoy doing things that bring back memories, which draw me closer to the people and things I love.

One of my favorite fall-time recipes is for oyster stew. My mom used to make this stew, and as far back as I can recall I’ve loved it. (However, most of my kids do not share the same enjoyment that I do, yet!) It is warm, salt and peppery, super satisfying, and it always reminds me of her! It was a part of our holiday traditions, and having it’s origins in Irish culture makes it a great fit for this partially Irish family.

It’s also one of the fastest soup or stews you can make, so it’s great for a quick lunch or last-minute family meal. If you know for certain you do not like oysters then feel free to move on, but if you love them or aren’t sure, stick with me!

You will need a few simple ingredients that I now choose to always keep on hand:

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1 can (8 oz) of  whole oysters (You can also opt for fresh oysters if you have access to them.)

Lea & Perrins Worcestershire sauce (This brand is non-negotiable for me; there’s none better!)

2 tablespoons of butter

3 cups of cold milk (I recommend 1% and adding some half and half or cream to achieve the best creamy texture.)

Fresh ground pepper and sea salt

Put the oysters with their liquid in a heavy-bottom pot.

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Turn the burner on low to medium heat and add about ½ teaspoon of pepper while the oysters come to a warm temperature. Be careful not to boil as the oysters can easily overcook and become chewy.

Slowly add in the milk,

While the milk is still somewhat cool, add the Worcestershire sauce (approx 1 tablespoon, depending on desired taste).

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Cut butter into small slats and add to pot. The butter adds flavor and texture but is also a great indicator as to how hot the milk is. I loved watching the butter melt as a kid and knowing the more it melted, the closer I was to eating!

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Once the butter is fully melted, stir the soup, adding salt and pepper to desired taste.

Our favorite way to serve this soup is with those fun little oyster crackers. This soup can also be reheated but not frozen.

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Family traditions like this are a good way of opening up conversation about loved ones who have passed away. It helps keep the memories alive, and it also connects the younger generation with the older — two of my favorite things!