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December 2005 Issue
Oysters Béarnaise
by Philip R. Gantt
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Welcome to Seasoned Cooking and to Phil's International Flair!

This week I had the pleasure of preparing some live oysters that were shipped to me directly by Ed's Kasilof Seafoods in Alaska. I must say, they were some of the best oysters I have ever eaten.

Most seafood markets will carry live oysters. When selecting oysters, make sure that the shells are tightly closed. Any oysters with open shells are dead and you don't want to eat those. Opening them can be a challenge, but if you use a small paring knife and force it between the shell halves to cut the muscle holding the shell closed, they will be easy to pry open.

Now, on to the recipe! Be well, and good eating!


Oysters Béarnaise

Since I like the flavor of Béarnaise sauce, I thought to try something different with my oysters. I must have read through over 100 oyster recipes before deciding to originate my own recipe, and the results surpassed my expectations. I allowed 3 oysters per person as an appetizer, but you can certainly prepare more of them for a main course. My dozen oysters went quickly and I could have eaten a few more if it weren't for the generous portion of king crab that I served as a main course.
  • 1 dozen fresh oysters
  • 1 cup Béarnaise sauce (can be prepared from package mix)
  • 1/4 cup white wine
  • Panko bread crumbs
  • 1 tsp. finely chopped parsley
  • Sprinkling of Parmesan cheese
After opening the oysters, place the meat from each oyster into the large half of the shell and arranged them on a baking pan. Also prepare some Béarnaise sauce from a packaged mix, substituting the wine for some of the milk the recipe called for. It's also a good idea to add the liquor from the oysters to the Béarnaise sauce. As a final touch, add the chopped parsley to the Béarnaise sauce after it thickens.

Spoon about 1 or 2 teaspoons of the Béarnaise sauce on top of each open face oyster. Then, top each with panko crumbs. Finally, sprinkle a little freshly grated parmesan cheese on top of each oyster.

Broil the oyster in the oven until the toppings just begin to brown, approximately 5 to 7 minutes. Serve immediately and enjoy!

  • Yields: 4 servings
  • Preparation Time: 15 minutes

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