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Chargrilled Oysters with Sriracha Sauce

For the past month, I’ve been working on creating a New Orleans-centric banner for the Everyday Epicurean. I thought this would be easy. Just put some typical NOLA food in front of a great local scene and BAM I have a good banner.

It doesn’t work like that. I realized this after an hour-long photo shoot of some beautiful models – a bag of Zapp’s, a Jockamo IPA, a cochon de lait Po’boy and a Peacemaker Po’boy all from Mahoney’s. If I’m going to buy a delicious Po’boy and stare at its melted cheddar cheese oozing over crispy bacon and overflowing fried oysters, well, I want to eat it. And something about watching their paper-wrapping dance about in the Audubon Park breeze for an hour makes the sandwiches less appealing to eat. After all that – and don’t worry, of course I still ate my po’boy – the picture dimensions did not work.

My next thought was a picture of a Po’boy sitting on the streetcar tracks. Maybe with a streetcar in the background. I put off taking the picture for many weeks because the streetcar drivers terrify me when there is even the slightest possibility of my car being in their way. So to put a defenseless sandwich in the line of their wheels seemed like a horrible idea. I finally gave up and opted to mesh together New Orleans pictures, which meant I was staring at lots of food. Hours of looking at the pictures and cropping them and editing them and putting them together.

And so, yesterday marked the 8th day of my overwhelming, work-distracting, very odd, Everyday Epicurean banner-induced oyster cravings. Never before did I realize how few of my friends are willing to go out for a dozen oysters. It’s not really that much to ask is it? I’ve hinted subtly, I’ve mentioned my intense cravings, I’ve begged. Nope.

I got my fix last night by dropping my plea for a dozen raw and making chargrilled oysters at home. I’ve done this recipe a few times, and I’ve never heard anyone not like it. The sauce is a delicious mixture of melted butter, sautéed garlic, Sriracha, and lemon juice. Poured over oysters and thrown on the grill, it’s a totally sating appetizer. If you don’t want to deal with shucking your own oysters, buy fresh oysters in a container and ask the guy in yoru fish department for shells. Just put each oyster in the shell and you save yourself a lot of time and, in the case at my house, a few cuts.

I have to apologize…I forgot to take a picture of the finished dish. Like I said, this was an 8 day craving. I was a little overeager to eat…

Barbecued Oysters
Slightly adapted from Weber’s Art of the Grill
Makes 12 oysters)

1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1 teaspoon minced garlic
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
2 tablespoons Sriracha
12 fresh oysters

In a small sauté pan over medium heat, cook the butter and garlic, stirring occasionally, until the garlic aroma is apparent and the butter begins to brown, 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from the heat and add the lemon juice and Sriracha sauce. Mix until well blended.

Prepare the grill for direct cooking over high heat (450° to 550°F).

Grip each oyster, flat side up, in a folded kitchen towel. Find a small opening between the shells near the hinge and pry open with an oyster knife. Try to keep the juices inside the shell. Loosen the oyster from the shell by running the oyster knife carefully underneath the body. Discard the top, flatter shell, keeping the oyster in the bottom, deeper shell.

Spoon ½ teaspoon of sauce over each oyster. Brush the cooking grates clean. Grill the oysters over direct high heat, with the lid closed as much as possible, until the sauce starts to bubble and the edges curl, 2 to 4 minutes. Using tongs, carefully remove the oysters from the grill. Serve warm.

Picnic tip: Make the Sriracha sauce at home and pack it with the oysters on ice in the cooler.

2 Comments

  1. Hi Liz, too bad about your photo shoot, hard when you do all that work and don’t get the shot you want. I bet the oysters made up for it, they sound delicious.
    -Gina-

  2. Hi Gina,
    Thanks for stopping by! To be honest, I can’t complain too much about not getting the shot — I got to spend a beautiful day in the park and got to eat a delicious fried oyster po’boy (albeit a cold one…)!
    -Liz

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