“Life is too short not to have oysters and champagne.”Christi Brinkley
Today it is my pleasure to share a recipe and a story from the very accomplished Antoinette Truglio Martin. Antionette is a very accomplished writer, and her blog is called Stories Served Around The Table. She is currently working on a series about the experience of coming to America and coming of age in America as an immigrant. The books are wonderfully written and would make great Christmas presents. Antionette’s blog can be found at www.antoinettetrugliomartin.com
Antoinette’s Oyster Rockefeller
Christmas Eve is the night of the seven fishes. Each of my sisters, a few nieces, and Mom have assignments. It usually adds up to a dozen or more dishes throughout the night as we wait for Santa Claus’ arrival (after the dishes are cleaned, before dessert and coffee).
My assignment is Oysters Antoinette, my spin on Oysters Rockefeller. I am fortunate to live in oyster mecca-the south shore on Long Island. Oyster farming is enjoying a Renaissance here. Blue Point oysters are, in my opinion, the best—plump with a hint of a salty brine. They taste like oysters. My recipe uses mild flavored ingredients and minimal texture so that the oysters’ deliciousness comes through. They never disappoint.
Ingredients for 1 dozen oysters (do the math for a big crowd)
1 dozen oysters, shucked with their juices saved, clean 12 oyster shells
1 small shallot chopped
1 Tbs butter
2 cups of chopped spinach
chopped fresh tarragon and parsley (I like more parsley)
Splash of light white wine like pinot grigio (optional)
1-2 cloves of roasted garlic
¼ cup of ½ and ½
½-3/4 cup of grated fontina cheese (depending on how cheesy you like your oysters)
Preheat the oven to 350°. In a saute pan, melt the butter with the roasted garlic and cook the shallots until transparent. Stir in the spinach, parsley, tarragon and a dash of salt.. When the spinach is almost wilted, splash in the wine if desired, and 1-2 Tbs of the oyster juice. Add the ½ and ½, stir until everything looks cooked. Take the pan off the heat, Let it cool until warm-ish. Stir in the grated fontina cheese.
Set the oyster shells on a pan. Spoon one raw oyster into each shell. Dollop the spinach mixture on top of each oyster. Bake in the oven for 7-10 minutes.
Cooking time depends on taste. My family has no problem slurping the gems down raw, so I cook Oysters Antoinette when they still have a little plumb to them. But if your crowd prefers a firm, slightly dried morsel, then cook it longer, but keep an eye on it. No one likes a burned oyster.
Doesn’t this recipe sound wonderful? I hope you have enjoyed meeting Antionette. I know if you visit her blog (www.antoinettetrugliomartin.com ), you will become a fan. Thank you, Antoinette, for sharing your Holiday Story and recipe.