Saturday, February 21, 2009

Oyster Oops

In most places around the country parents are forcing their children to eat their peas and carrots. Inevitably, while growing up most children have suffered through the "forced tastings". You know them well, the "eat just one pea and you will be done"; "give it a try and I am sure you will like it"; "you can't get up from the table until you finish your greens" - everyone has experienced these palate pressures from their parents.

In New Orleans, these situations are the same. However, the peas and carrots are replaced with raw oysters. I will never forget the day that we were dining as a family in a small local restaurant and my Daddy encouraged me as a very picky 5 year old to eat a raw slimy oyster. I vividly remember that it didn't end so well and I am sure my father quickly regretted coxing me into indulging in this delicacy. It was a long time before I was able to partake in the oyster experience again, but all my wounds are healed now and I have never looked back. I LOVE LOVE LOVE oysters and can't get enough of them. I bet my parents could have never predicted this outcome as they watched in horror 20 something years ago!

Oysters Gabie
Adapted from Greg Sonnier/Gabrielle


1 can of artichoke hearts
1 pint of large oysters (fresh) drained
2 Tbsp breadcrumbs
2 Tbsp Parmesan Cheese
1 Tbsp olive oil
4 oz pancetta, finely diced
1 Tbsp butter
1/4 cup green onions
1 Tbsp finely chopped garlic
2 Tbsp finely chopped parsley
Juice from 1 lemon
1/4 cup breadcrumbs
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese


1. In a medium-hot skillet, place 1 Tbsp of olive oil; brown pancetta until crispy;

add butter; saute onions, garlic, and parsley until tender, about 3-4 minutes.

2. Add chopped artichokes then lemon juice and saute about 2 more mins.

Remove from fire; add breadcrumbs and cheese, and toss lightly.

3. Place 4 or 5 oysters into each of 4 individual casseroles.

Top with artichoke dressing (divided evenly)

and with extra 2 Tbsp of cheese and breadcrumbs, mixed together.

4. Bake in hot oven (450 degrees) until browned, about 10-15 minutes (I baked for 12 minutes).

These individual casseroles were amazing! It was a very easy dish to make and oh so delicious. I couldn't stop thinking about this dish for days after I made it. I love all the ingredients and they came together perfectly. Forrest found it to be a little tart. I love lemon and sour flavors so I didn't agree and if I were to make it again I wouldn't change a thing. But if you are not a big fan of lemon then only use half of a lemon when squeezing over the artichoke hearts.


Gabriela (Gabi With An Eye) said...

No, don't tell me. Lemme guess. You puked that raw oyster right up all over your 'rents. Am I right? Well, puke notwithstanding, these oysters look sensational.

Anonymous said...

Those look great. I certainly miss oysters as a vegetarian. I have great memories on having oysters on new year's day.

dad said...

As my youngest daughter you were always overly dramatic. I remember that once when I pretended to be "the fly" you didn't sleep without your mother in your bed for two weeks. I still believe that my encouragement to try that oyster is responisble for your love of oysters today.

Joelen said...

This recipe looks delicious and I hope to make this soon!

Anonymous said...

In Bizzy's defense, that imitation of "The Fly" was scary and I was in highschool! I still remember it! And can't wait to my kids are old enough to see the movie and I can try the impression out on them.

Your sister,


PS The oyster dish looks delicious!

MaryBeth said...

I have never eaten oysters before and I think it is all due to the fact that they are very slimy looking, however seeing them in your dish I may actually be able to give this a try. Thanks for letting me see them in a better light.

Cassie said...

This was very tasty! I had to stop at the grocery store on the way home yesterday to pick up the ingredients so I could make it right away =)