Friday, July 31, 2009

Grilled Oysters with Garlic Butter Oil and Basil

One of our very favorite spring through fall dinner starters is grilled oysters. We prepare them very simply so as not to muddy their fresh-out-of-the-water salty-sea taste.

That's right.Harvested on Wednesday afternoon and delivered to our door on Thursday morning. These oysters are as fresh as fresh can be.

We usually order Kumamotos and small Pacifics. Mr CC likes his kumos raw with a squeeze of Meyer lemon juice and a small grind of black peppercorns. He says they're superb. I myself will never know. A terribly traumatic run-in with a raw oyster when Mr CC was courting me left me with - dare I say it - a bad taste in my mouth.

I really don't think I'm missing out on much. Swimming in their own little teaspoon of butter and olive oil with minced fresh garlic, grilled just enough to heat them through, then topped with a few drops of hot sauce - could there be anything more sublime?

Grilled Oysters with Garlic Butter Oil, Basil and Cholula
fresh oysters in their shells
olive oil
garlic, peeled a minced
fresh basil, chopped
Cholula hot sauce
This is more technique than a recipe and the foremost thing you need is to have an accomplished oyster shucker in your midst. One who doesn't fear the knife. More to the point, one who is quite handy with an oyster knife.
That would not be me.
That would be the intrepid Mr CC who does a damn fine job of shucking oysters.
So, you open the oyster's shell (I'll try to get Mr CC to do a video to show you how) and discard the top shell, reserving the oyster in its bottom shell with the liquor.
Place each oyster on this very cool rack and when filled, put on the grill over high heat.
Meanwhile you will have placed several tablespoons of good olive oil, along with a few teaspoons of unsalted butter, in a small saucepan over low heat.
Add about 4 cloves worth of minced garlic and heat until it's simmering gently.
Spoon a small amount of this delectable elixir over each oyster as they are cooking.
The oysters are ready when their edges begin to curl slightly.
Remove them from the grill, sprinkle with a bit of chopped basil and serve immediately, in the half-shell, not forgetting to pass the oh-so-important bottle of Cholula.
Pure heaven.

Copyright © 2005-2009, Christine Cooks. All rights reserved


  1. You know I'm going to keep nagging you until you tell me you've signed up for BlogHer '10. How can you resist in NY? (And for you I might even be willing to have a roommate, let's talk!)

  2. Hi Kalyn,
    NYC is terribly hard to resist, you're right. We'll talk soon! :)

  3. I'm not a big oyster fan but this preparation sounds like something I'd like to try!

  4. If you do, David, drop me a note to tell me how you like them.


Thank you for stopping by! I will do my best to respond to your comments and questions so feel free to write to me here. Sorry for the comment moderation but it helps to keep the spammers at bay.