Oysters, Anyone?

Oysters are an acquired taste…you either love them or you hate them! I was first introduced to oysters at a tender age of five or six by my dad. He would periodically stop at The Oyster House in Market Square downtown Pittsburgh and bring home an order or two of breaded, fried oysters.  He loved to eat them so much that he kept a bottle of malt vinegar and hot sauce in his glove box for whenever the urge for oysters struck.  Honest!

I remember eating only the breading at first, which was thick, moist and chewy.  I  gradually began looking for and eating the sweet, plump oysters hidden within the breading. The taste of oysters is mostly bland, therefore needing the added flavors of vinegar and hot sauce.

As I grew a little older, my dad and I would share our own strange little snack of smoked oyster on top of Ritz crackers  topped off with a squirt of Cheez Whiz…unsophisticated but good!  I think I was more fascinated with the manner of opening that small oval tin of oysters.  I would take the metal key adhered underneath the can and attach it to the metal strip and unwind it along the edge of the top to peel back the lid with the key.  Very neat for a ten year old kid!

Fried oysters were never a part of our Christmas Eve Feast of the Seven Fishes, but made their way onto the menu only 10 or 12 years ago.  We still include them in memory of my Dad even though I’m the only one who will eat them!

Here in Hilton Head, oysters appear on the menus at restaurants a number of different ways.  Po’ Boy fried oyster sandwiches, Oysters Dafuskie, named after the island which is a hop, skip and a swim away, and of course, your traditional raw and roasted oysters. There are lots of Oyster Roasts held here on the week-ends serving not only oysters but shrimp, cole slaw, red rice, corn on the cob when in season, collard greens and for dessert good old southern peach cobblers and banana pudding.  They do know how to eat her in the South!  There is only one small peculiar rule down here about eating oysters, they are only available in the months that contain an “r” in it.  those excluded would be May, June, July, August.  Hmm, I’ll have to research that a little more……

Here is my adaption of Oysters Dafuskie ( A creamy oyster stew)  Serve with small oyster crackers, what else!?!

1 C Half and Half

1 C Heavy Cream

1 T Butter

1 T Cocktail Sauce

1 T Worcestershire  Sauce

1 t hot sauce (Tabasco)

1 Pint shucked oysters with juice

Heat all liquid ingredients in med sauce pan till just simmering.  Add the oysters with juice, and cook for about 5 min. or until the edges of the oysters begin to curl.  Take off heat, serve immediately in bowls with a dollop of sour cream and a sprinkling of paprika.  Can season with salt, pepper and more hot sauce!


Published in: on FebruaryUTCbSat, 28 Feb 2009 18:20:15 +0000000000Sat, 28 Feb 2009 18:20:15 +0000pmSat, 28 Feb 2009 18:20:15 +000009 9, 2008 at 2:20 p02  Leave a Comment  
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