Baked oysters with watercress and anise butter

Baked oysters with watercress and anise butter

By
From
Everyday Seafood
Serves
4

This is a version of the Oysters Rockefeller that we cook at Outlaw’s Fish Kitchen. The Porthilly oysters we use are fantastic for cooking and great in this dish. If you have any of the flavoured butter left over, wrap it well and freeze it, but I doubt you will – it tastes too good.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
24 live rock oysters
500g rock salt, for baking
100g fresh breadcrumbs

For the watercress and anise butter

Quantity Ingredient
150g watercress, leaves picked
150g spinach leaves
150g unsalted butter
3 small shallots, finely chopped
1 small green chilli, deseeded and finely chopped
30ml ricard pernod
30g tarragon, leaves picked

To serve

Quantity Ingredient
rock salt or seaweed

Method

  1. For the butter, bring a pan of salted water to the boil. Add the watercress and spinach and blanch for 1 minute. Immediately drain and plunge the leaves into a bowl of iced water to cool quickly. When cold, drain and squeeze out the excess water.
  2. Heat a small pan over a medium heat and add 50 g of the butter. When it is bubbling, add the shallots and chilli and sweat for 3 minutes until the shallots are translucent. Add the pernod and simmer for 30 seconds.
  3. Tip the contents of the pan into a blender. Let cool slightly, then add the tarragon and blanched watercress and spinach. Blitz to combine, then add the remaining 100 g butter. Blend for 30 seconds, scraping down the sides of the jug once or twice. Transfer to a bowl, cover and set aside.
  4. Preheat your oven to 200°C. Line a large baking tray with enough salt to allow you to sit the oyster shells on without them toppling over. Open the oysters and prise off the top shell. Drain off the juices. Cut the muscle to release the oyster but leave it in the rounded shell; check for any fragments of shell.
  5. Top each oyster with a generous helping of the watercress butter and sprinkle with an even layer of breadcrumbs. Bake for 12 minutes, or until the breadcrumbs are golden and crispy. Serve immediately, on little salt mounds or nestled in seaweed.
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