Stacy’s friend, who lives on the water and participates in a program using oysters to improve water quality, gave us an enormous laundry basket full of the tasty bivalves. It’s a luxury to have them in the shell, since we usually harvest wild oysters, which requires us to shuck on the beach and leave the shells for baby oysters to grow on. Still, what to do with such a bonanza?
Knowing we had about three days to consume the lot, we took five dozen to a party and threw them on the barbecue until they popped open–about three minutes a side. Then we melted a dollop of butter mixed with tabasco, garlic and lemon juice into the cup-shaped side and served on the half shell. These were gone in minutes.
Next day we gave away several dozen, then had a “surf-n-turf” dinner of mallard breast (from the treasured stash given to us by Smarty) marinated in olive oil, garlic and rosemary then pan seared, and more oysters with the leftover butter sauce from the night before. And finally, on the third day, Stacy went all out and made these “Rockefeller” style morsels. That’s sauteed spinach with butter, lemon, garlic and cream spooned over the oyster, followed by a sprinkle of fresh-grated parm cheese and a quick pass under the broiler. Surprisingly, even after three straight days of oysters, I was sad to see the last one go.