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Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Grilled Oysters!

Photo and text by KARA DiCAMILLO/ecoRI News contributor
One of the things I could eat a few times a week is oysters. I absolutely love them. My favorite way to eat oysters is to slurp them raw with a mignonette. But when I tried the Grilled Oysters recipe from Laura Blackwell’s new book “The Fisherman’s Table,” I have to say that I’m hooked.
Blackwell, an Aquidneck Islander, wrote her new cookbook in collaboration with the fishermen of Newport and the Newport Lobster Shack. I love that it focuses on the seafood that is caught in our local waters. Throughout the cookbook, Blackwell gives us tips from the fishermen, explanations about the different variations of seafood such as crabs and oysters, and she also focuses on local fruits and vegetables.

I don’t cook seafood often and one of the reasons why is because I’ve always thought it to be complicated. If you’ve been following my column you know that I like to keep it simple and easy. However, what is apparent in Blackwell’s book is that not only are the recipes relatively healthy, but they are straightforward as well. Blackwell explains that the portions are generous helpings and mimic the meals you would find on a local fisherman’s table.
I decided to try grilled oysters because I’ve actually never had them. I thought that by cooking them they would lose their flavor. But I was wrong. They were perfectly sweet and delicious, and I’ll definitely be grilling the again and again. I stopped at the local farmers market and picked up a dozen from Matunuck Oyster Bar, harvested from Potter’s Pond.
Here is Blackwell’s recipe, with my addition of the garlic.
Grilled Oysters
Served as an appetizer
Dozen local oysters
Olive oil
White wine
Clove of minced garlic
Herbs, such as parsley and basil
Fresh parmesan cheese, grated
Shuck the oysters with a dull knife. Leave the oyster in the shell, but dislodge it by sliding the knife under the meat. Leave the liquor. Heat your grill to medium-high.
Make a mixture of olive oil, white wine, garlic and whatever herbs you like, along with salt and pepper. Dash the mixture on the oysters. Grill oysters over medium-high heat, face up. Dash with the wine mixture every so often. For best results, allow some of the olive oil to get on the side of the shells to help the grill “flame up.”
Remove from heat when oysters are golden brown and look “cooked.” Time depends entirely on grill temperature. Sprinkle with grated parmesan cheese and serve.