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Thanksgiving Oyster Dressing

Oyster Preparation

Shucking Oysters for Frying or Sauteeing

Follow the link to a UTube Video on shucking oysters. Alternatively, oysters can be frozen and then slightly thawed. The nice part about freezing is that all of the liquor or oyster juice is retained where as when an oyster is shucked fresh, much of the liquor can be lost. The liquor provides a lot of the flavor.

How to shuck an Oyster?

Steaming Oysters

All you need is a pan with a tight fitting lid - scrub or rinse the oysters and place in pan. Add an inch or two of water and cover. Bring to boil and steam until they open. (You can also steam with beer or wine, and add herbs. A little Old Bay Seasoning will add some zing too!)

Oysters in the Oven

Oysters can be cooked in a conventional oven. Clean the oysters and place them cupped side down on a baking pan and bake at 350-400 until they pop open.

Grilling Oysters

Place clean oysters on hot grill with the cupped side down. It takes about 5 to 8 mnutes for them to pop open. If you like them well done, let them cook a while longer.

Oysters in the Microwave

Oysters can be cooked in a microwave but be cautious and conservative on the cooking time since all microwaves cook differently. Clean the oysters and place cupped side down. Cook on high for 45 seconds and no more than a minute. Cooking too long will cause the oyster to explode. Start with 45 seconds and go from there.


Oyster Recipes


Serving Size: 8

Recipe: Take shucked and sautee just a minute or two in olive oil with garlic. Dip in seasoned bread crumbs, top with grated parmesan cheese and place under broiler for just a minute.


Directions: Wash and drain shucked . Roll in cracker crumbs. Lay on a lightly oiled cookie sheet. Melt margarine; add lemon juice. Spoon mixture on top of each oyster. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Broil 6 to 10 minutes or until browned. Turn oysters; spoon on remaining margarine mixture. Season and complete the broiling.



Serving Size: 4



Drain oysters. Beat eggs with salt and pepper and cayenne. Whisk in water. Put bread crumbs in a shallow bowl. Dip oysters, one at a time, into the egg mixture then into the bread crumbs. Let rest for 5 minutes before frying. Fry in hot deep oil at about 375 degrees until golden brown. Serve immediately with cocktail sauce or tartar sauce, or use in sandwiches.


on the Half Shell


Take one oyster on the half shell and a lemon wedge. Dish a few small spoonfuls of the condiments provided onto your side plate. Squeeze a generous amount of lemon directly onto the oyster. Add one or more small heaps of cocktail sauce, horseradish or the chef's special sauce, often a tart onion vinaigrette concoction that perfectly compliments the chilled shellfish. These sauces enhance the flavor, but try not to drown the natural taste of the oyster. Take a small fork and use it to gently loosen the oyster from its shell. You may either directly place the forked oyster on your palate or leave the loosened oyster in its shell, which is now slick with juices.

If you left the oyster resting in the shell, neatly pick up the shell with the wider, shallower end of the shell facing your mouth. Tip the oyster shell so that the oyster slides directly into your mouth. Some diners will swiftly swallow the oyster, although more than a few gastronomes prefer to take a few soft chews to soak in the flavor of the oyster.


Oyster Stew



Saute onion in butter until tender. Add remaining ingredients. Cook over low heat until edges of oysters begin to curl and mixture is hot but not boiling. Serve stew with crackers and garnish with sliced green onions.


Emeril and Tommy Leggett’s Chesapeake Bay Baked Oyster Dressing



Preheat the oven to 375°F.
Drain the oysters, reserving 1 cup of the liquor. Set aside.
Heat the oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onions, bell peppers, celery, salt, and cayenne. Saute‚ for about 5 minutes, or until wilted. Add the bay leaves, garlic, and parsley. Saute‚ for about 1 minute.
In a mixing bowl, combine the bread mixture with the oyster liquor and enough water to moisten.
Add the moistened breadcrumbs to the vegetables in the skillet and cook for 2 to 3 minutes, stirring constantly. Add the oysters and the Parmesan cheese. Stir to mix well and remove from the heat.
Oil a 9 X 11-inch baking pan and pour in the mixture. Top with more Parmesan and bake for about 1 hour, or until bubbly and golden brown.
Remove the bay leaves and serve hot.

Let Emeril and Tommy show you how!