Oddly enough, oyster stew is a Thanksgiving tradition in this part of the world, and my wife had a hankering for something like it tonight. In a spirit of fooling around, though, rather than going with the standard recipe, I "fused" oyster stew and a seafood Alfredo and came up with a hybrid pasta dish that landed somewhere in between. I went with nonfat half-and-half and "light" butter, but going full-fat certainly would make this one luxurious.

Mince 2 fat garlic cloves and an approximately equal amount of fresh ginger, and sautee all in a tablespoon of good olive oil until it's aromatic; add about 8 ounces of scallops (I used the sweet, expensive Nantucket Bay beauties), and cook just until they turn white. Add 1/2 cup cream, half-and-half or nonfat half-and-half, 1 tablespoon butter (or light butter), salt, pepper and a sprinkle of freshly grated nutmeg. Bring to the boil, and cook for just a minute or so, until the cream thickens. You don't want to overcook the scallops. Add 1/2 cup fresh shucked oysters with their liquor and a squirt of lemon; add 1/4 cup chopped Italian flatleaf parsley; turn down heat and continue cooking just until the oysters are warmed through.

Meanwhile, you've been cooking 1 cup of short pasta (conchiglie, ziti, mostaccioli, etc.); drain it and stir it into the sauce with 1/4 cup grated Parmigiano Reggiano.

The flavors here are an absolute delight, and it went perfectly with a dry Spanish Albarino white.