5 Tbsp olive oil
1-pint oysters with their liquor, jarred or freshly shucked, about 2 dozen
1/4 cup flour
2 celery stalks, minced
1 medium onion, minced
1 3/4 cup milk
1/4 cup cream
Freshly ground white pepper
2 ounces Pernod or another Anise Flavored Liquor
1/4 cup parsley, minced
Strain the oyster juice through a fine-meshed sieve to remove grit and reserve the oyster juice. Pick out the oysters and lay out flat on a tray.
Make a roux by adding the oil to a pot over medium heat. Add the flour and stir to make a roux. Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook the mixture for a few minutes, stirring often until a strong nutty aroma is present and when the roux turns the color of coffee-with-cream. Stir in the celery and onions. Increase the heat to medium and cook for 2-3 minutes.
Add the oyster juice and any juices the oysters in the pan have released. The flour in the roux will absorb the liquid and turn into a paste. Slowly add the milk and cream, stirring to incorporate as you pour them in.
Heat the soup to just below a simmer over low heat and cook for 15 minutes. (Do not let the soup boil! Or the soup may separate)
If you have large oysters, you may want to cut them in half or even quarters if larger than 3 inches. Add the oysters and Pernod, cook for another 2 minutes, until the edges of the oysters just begin to curl.
Add salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste. Garnish with fresh chopped parsley to serve.