Saturday, September 19, 2009

Of Cabbages and Kings: Oysters Kilpatrick

"The time has come," the Walrus said,
"To talk of many things:
Of shoes—and ships—and sealing-wax—
Of cabbages—and kings—
And why the sea is boiling hot—
And whether pigs have wings."

Through the Looking-Glass

The verse above is from Lewis Carroll’s poem the Walrus and the Carpenter, which is about eating unsuspecting oysters (and arguably capitalism). The whimsical verse was running through my head as I gleefully shucked half a dozen of these delicious little molluscs recently. A touch maniacal perhaps, but food preparation should be fun too, it is not all about the eating! Now if I could only come up with an inspirational ‘washing up’ Haiku….

While chilled and freshly shucked is undeniably a great way to eat oysters, especially when accompanied by a sherbety glass of Sauvingnon Blanc, I think Kilpatrick is a fantastic alternative way to enjoy these delicious shellfish.

6 fresh, unopened oysters
2 slices lean bacon, chopped
Tablespoon Butter
Tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
Bed of salt to serve

Shuck the oysters: Shucking an oyster is not difficult at all. Insert a short sturdy blade into the gap at the narrow end of the oyster and wriggle to get traction, you will hear a satisfying pop and the shell is loose. Gently cut the membrane off the top shell to remove the top shell.

Preheat a grill to hot and arrange the oysters on the grill.

Over a low heat combine butter and Worcestershire sauce in a pan til it reaches simmering point. Pour a teaspoon over each oyster and sprinkle with the diced bacon.

Stick under the grill for three minutes until the oysters are plump and juicey and the bacon crisp.

Serve with a minerally rosé or an American style Pale Ale. Butte Creek for example?

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