On Line Cookbook

Oyster Pie

Recipe Information
Traditional Maryland recipe from Great American Seafood Cookbook



  • Pie Pastry:
  • 2 cups (475 ml) all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 tsp (1 ml) salt
  • 2/3 cup (150 ml) chilled unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup (125 ml) ice water or more
  • Bechamel Sauce:
  • 2 to 2-1/4 cups (525 ml) milk
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 4 tbsp (60 ml) unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup (60 ml) all-purpose flour
  • liquor reserved from oysters
  • salt and freshly ground white pepper
  • pinch of cayenne pepper
  • generous pinch of ground mace
  • Filling:
  • 2 dozen small (yearling) oysters, drained and liquor reserved for sauce
  • 3 hard-cooked large eggs, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 1 14-1/2 oz (406 grm). can white or golden hominy, drained and rinsed
  • salt and freshly ground white pepper
  • mace
  • Pastry:
  • Combine flour and salt in large bowl and shave fine slices of butter onto the flour and toss with fork to mix.
  • Sprinkle in 1/2 cup (125 ml) of the ice water while tossing with fork until pastry is moist enough to form into a ball. Add more water if necessary.
  • Wrap in waxed paper and chill for at least 1 hour.
  • Roll out two thirds of the pastry, cut to 12 inch circle and line bottom of 10 inch tart pan (type with removable bottom).
  • Roll remaining pastry into 11 inch circle for top of pie and place on baking sheet. Chill crusts for 30 minutes.
  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees (200 C.).
  • Cover bottom crust and top crust with foil and weigh down with baking weights or dried beans (keeps flat).
  • Bake both crusts for 8 minutes then remove foil and weights and continue baking for 8 to 12 additional minutes uncovered, until golden brown, cool.
  • Sauce:
  • In small saucepan, scald 2 cups (475 ml) of milk with the bay leave over medium heat.
  • Let steep (off heat) for 5 minutes then discard bay leaf.
  • Melt butter in heavy-bottomed pan over medium heat being careful not to brown.
  • Whisk in the flour and cook, whisking constantly, for 3 minutes.
  • Pour in the warm milk and continue cooking, whisking constantly until thickened.
  • Whisk in the oyster liquor and additional milk if necessary to make a thick but pourable sauce.
  • Season with salt, white pepper, cayenne, and mace to taste.
  • Remove sauce from heat and add oysters, stirring gently to mix in.
  • Cover bottom crust (still in tart pan) with egg slices.
  • Sprinkle hominy over the eggs and season with salt and pepper.
  • Pour in the hot oyster sauce spreading evenly to edge of pastry.
  • Dust with additional mace.
  • Gently set the top crust in place and set the pie on a baking sheet. Bake at 400 degrees (200 C.) until pie is heated through, 12 to 15 minutes.
  • Be careful not to brown the pastry or over-cook the oysters.
  • Remove from oven and remove the sides of tart pan.
  • Serve immediately.
This pie is actually named the Sotterley Oyster Pye for the historic Sotterly Mansion in Maryland where lavish banquets served the dish. Oyster pie is wonderful-sounds unusual and is but tastes great. Nice with a fruity white wine. Recipe recreated by William Taylor a Maryland caterer and historian.