December 22, 2010

Spicy Fried Oysters


Ingredients:
16 oz shucked, raw "frying size" oysters
2/3 cup Instant Blending Flour
2/3 cup bread crumbs
2 eggs, beaten
3 1/2 tablespoons garlic-habanero hot sauce*
1 teaspoon cayenne
1 teaspoon hot paprika
1 teaspoon chipotle
salt
freshly ground black pepper

canola oil for frying

Directions:
Pour the oysters in a small bowl. Douse in hot sauce. Allow to soak for 10 minutes or up to one hour in the fridge. Meanwhile pour the egg, flour and breadcrumbs into separate shallow bowls. Stir the the spices to the breadcrumbs. Beat some hot sauce into the egg if desired. Heat about 1/2 to 1 inch of oil in a large, shallow skillet, enough to cover the oysters.

Dredge each oyster in the flour, then in the egg then the seasoned bread crumbs. Drop the oysters into the hot oil, taking care that they do not overlap or they will stick together. Cook until golden on all sides, just a minute or so. Remove to a paper towel lined plate to drain.

*I used the yummy Miss Anna's that I bought in St. Croix but any garlic-y habanero sauce would work.

My thoughts:

I love oysters very much. Growing up, once a year my mom and grandpop would pick up a huge order of fried oysters from a local seafood shop and we'd have a feast of oysters just barely garnished with coleslaw and cocktail sauce. It was the culinary high light of my year even when I was quite young, even under age five or so. Despite our love of oysters, I don't think it ever occurred to my family to fry our our own. It wasn't until I was off on my own that I realized how easily (and cheaply!) it was to find local frying oysters. Normally I just fry them dredged in matzo meal or bread crumbs but these time I decided to branch out and make a spicier version that had no need of a sauce. I was worried the oysters' flavor would be overpowered by the spices but it really wasn't. Each bite was crispy then spicy then very oyster-y. Fried seafood perfection! We had these for dinner straight but I think they'd be great in po boys or even as an appetizer.

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