If you struggle (like I struggle) with shucking oysters this is a handy way to get a little head-start on the project. When you bake the oysters first, it puts them in a more ‘cooked’ state of mind to go ahead and let you pry that shell back a little easier. I could *just* about do it with my fingers for most of these, but I did have to employ the oyster knife here and there so it’s a good idea to have one available.
~serves two for dinner, or 4 for appetizers~
- 8 live Pacific Oysters in the shell
- 2 T garlic herb butter (we have this available to purchase or find the recipe at the bottom)
- 2/3 cup panko breadcrumbs
- lemon and/or parmesan cheese for garnish
Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Place your oysters in the sink and give them a quick rinse - you don’t need them super-clean, but spritzing off the top layer of ‘natural environment’ makes it easier to keep the insides clean once we start digging in.
I used a large glass pyrex dish, but a cookie sheet will work too - place your oysters (with the flat side up) in the dish. Some cooks suggest a layer of rock salt in the bottom of the dish to snug the oysters into to keep them level and prevent loss of the juice, but I haven’t done that in years. Feel free to be fancy!
Cook your oysters for 10 minutes in the oven, then pull the dish out and let them sit for a minute or two (keep your oven on!). In the mean time, melt your garlic herb butter and stir it into the panko breadcrumbs.
Place a folded dish towel in one hand, hold the oyster on top of the towel, and then use your other hand and/or an oyster knife to pull the top shell back. Repeat for all of the oysters!
Tip a big spoonful of the buttery breadcrumbs on top of each oyster meat, and then pop the dish back in the oven for 5-6 minutes or until your breadcrumbs are starting to brown a bit.
Let them cool for a minute or two, and then… enjoy! Serve these with ice-cold bubbly or your beerverage of choice.