Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Oyster love - how to eat them

Finally, we arrive at that magic moment, with a platter of oysters standing in front of you. I don’t have to worry about opening them, because at our place it’s my husband who opens them. I know that he uses a special oyster knife and a folded cloth to protect his hand and that it takes a while…. Oysters should be alive when you eat them and shut firmly when you touch them.

Back to the platter. First I admire the beauty of the scene and then I tip my head slightly to inhale the nice, salty smell. It looks like I am just enjoying the aroma, which I am, but I also do this to check that they are alright! The smell should be fresh and salty, nothing else. Once you have tasted oysters you’ll understand what I mean. Then I take my lemon and carefully add a couple of drops on each oyster. The lemon is a seasoning, but I also check that each oyster reacts to the acid with a tiny movement. You observe this easiest close to the borders. Maybe I seem a little bit paranoid, but after all the stories I heard about people being sick after eating bad oysters, I do what I can to ensure that my oysters are in perfect health. Until I gulp them down that is.

Now I pick up my oyster and with a special fork I tear at the muscle that keeps the oyster attached to its shell. A knife or an ordinary fork works too, no worries. And then, hop, down it goes! You can also drink it down from the shell… looks very professional!

Lemon is a classic seasoning for oysters, but I actually prefer shallot vinegar… in a restaurant most places serve it as an option. At home, it is very easy to make yourself, check here for a recipe for shallot vinegar and two more sauces. It also contains a description of how to open them.


  1. bonjour Eva ! tu finis par me donner le mal du pays !! pourtant je me suis beaucoup attachée au pays des ch'tis (bon hormis le climat, of course !)
    Les huitres font partie des choses qui me manquent le plus (ah le petit plateau du dimanche ....)
    bonne journée !

  2. He he! I'm happy to make you homesick, now that I know that you are coming back!!! We had lunch at a new restaurant yesterday and they had oysters in the buffet... plus the main dish for 10,50, a bargain! But maybe not for them after I emptied the oyster plate...


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