Monday, February 28, 2011

Seafood At Almost Heaven South - Grilled Oysters

I don’t know if this everywhere, but Bev signed us up for a discount coupon place called – same as Groupon I believe. While we seem to get a deal offer from each of them every day, we’ve only bought one – seafood. Around here, the selection of good seafood is pretty sparse, and a place in Knoxville called The Shrimp Dock is the best I know of – but pretty pricey. However, when I could buy $100 worth for $50, I just could not pass it up, so Bev and I went shopping. I made a list of some things I wanted, including lobster tails, but at $32.50/lb, my $100 would go too fast and I wanted too many other things, plus Bev isn’t much of a lobster fan.

After carefully studying their inventory, we decided on 2# of frozen jumbo lump crabmeat, 2 dozen shucked oysters for frying, 2 dozen fresh oysters for grilling, 2 dozen little nick clams for steaming and grilling, a nice piece of wild caught Canadian salmon, and two flounder fillets.

Since most of it was fresh, we decided to eat as much as we could before freezing any, so the first meal was to be grilled oysters for an appetizer and fried oysters and cucumber salad for the meal. I’m not an experienced oyster shucker (bad actually), having only done it a time or two, and didn’t have the best tools - heavy duty garden knife for getting them open, paring knife for cutting muscles, pot holder for a glove.

I went through all of them all and managed to get a little more than half open - some really nice ones.

I’ve seen them in contests on TV and the proshuckers open several per minute – I just reversed it and used the same number of minutes per oyster. If I had a day job, I’d sure keep it and the Oyster Shuckers of America do not have to consider me a threat for their job. Plus, I’d probably starve to death on an oyster diet, as I likely spent more energy opening one that I got back eating it. I’m going to get a lesson and the correct tools before I buy fresh oysters again.

I’ve eaten grilled oysters at Uncle Bubba’s Oyster House (Paula Deens brother) in Savannah, Ga and from Acme Oyster House in NOLA and I preferred Bubba’s as I thought Acme had too much stuff on theirs and they cooked them way too long. But rather than use Bubba’s recipe, I decided to try a different one from I basically went by it and here’s what I actually did:

1/4 tsp dried parsley (didn’t have any fresh)
2 tsp garlic through the garlic press
6 tbsp butter - slightly melted
1/8 tsp black pepper
Salt omitted as I used salted butter

I mixed these together an hour early so the parsley could rehydrate and the mix set up a little. I added a heavy ½ tsp to each oyster (recipe was for 24, but I only had 18), sprinkled on a little Emeril’s Essence, and headed for the preheated grill. Getting some good smoke from the grill as some of the butter dripped onto the charcoal.

I was expecting little shriveled up, cooked to death oysters, like we had at Acme, but to my surprise, if you keep an eye on them, you can end up with nice plumb, but cooked-through oysters. I think they cooked for about 7 minutes, but that is very fire dependent. I had another senior moment and forgot to add the cheese to the butter, so I grated-on some Parmesan just after removing them from the grill. I think I prefer this as it all stayed with the oyster rather than running off into the grill. Here’s my plate and I dipped the bread in each shell to soak up the liquid as I ate the oyster.

My understanding is that Drago’s in Metairie is “The Place” to go for grilled oysters, but we didn’t make it there and I can’t remember those from Bubba’s that well, but I would almost guarantee, if you ate these, you wouldn’t bother with another oyster house – I liked these as well as anything I’ve ever blogged about and they will surely be on the menu when Rhett comes home from Afghanistan (he loved Acme’s), and for the other kids upon request.

I’m definitely going to learn how to open them because they were worth every agonizing minute I spent on each of them and with the butter and stuff, I probably could survive on them. Since they were plump enough to be filling, we just had these and cucumber salad and forgot about the fried ones. But tune in day after tomorrow for day 2 of seafood.

Have a great day, thanks for stopping by, and can you tell I liked these.



  1. My brother-in-law grills his oysters too and everyone loves them. Your butter sounds perfect. Good seafood is hard to come by in the mountains too. That's why we eat so much of it when we're in Florida.

    Bev is by far the best shopper I know. Sounds like you got a lot of seafood for $100.

  2. I've purchased exactly three of those coupons, all for good deals on local restaurants. Like the concept. as you can imagine, our seafood prices are sky high and selection is spotty. I've never had or seen cooked oysters..only raw...what's up with that? Maybe I tried the raw and never paid attention to them again to see they would be offered cooked?...I'm so confused. :-)

  3. I LOVE LOVE LOVE grilled oysters if they are done right... yours look like they were done right!! YUM! I've never had the urge to want to shuck oysters, but this might just inspire me to do it... Then again, it would be so easy to go down the road to the nearest seafood place and have them do it for me!! lol

  4. Oysters are deffinately on the menu when i return. I am already tired of eating lamb and rice with my hands. Rhett

  5. Bob is the oyster lover here, though I do believe I could eat them prepared your way. Raw oysters and I don't get along well. I have a problem with their texture and because of that I tend to forget they can be cooked. I'll really have to try to prepare them more often.
    Have a great day. Blessings...Mary

  6. Aw Larry, LOL it just takes practice. My daddy could go through a sack in no time sitting out in the garage. He actually forced me to try my very first raw oyster. Thought it was so gross back then, love them now! (But only the sweet & salty Gulf oysters of course :) My father in law buys by the sack and shucks them too. Me, I usually buy mine in a jar already shucked! :) unless of course my paw in law sends me a half gallon :) :)

    I love chargrilled too, though it is really easy to overcook them that's for sure.

    They were advertising on the Oscars last night. I checked it out - only can get offers from New Orleans or Mobile, nothing here.

    Have a great week!

  7. Hi Larry, Are you washing away over there today? We had TONS and TONS of rain!!!

    I love oysters --but have never had them grilled... I always get fried oysters--but I'm sure that the grilled ones are better for us.


  8. Those sound GREAT! I've always done raw, never tried grilled... Going to this weekend though... I hear you on the shucking, however I got a mesh glove and a shucker and I can do two a minute or so! (The glove does NOT eliminate the pain when you slip by the way!

    Thank you for the great inspiration!


  9. I can't believe I have never had grilled oysters!

  10. Larry, it's just not fair! ;) Although we have terrific wild salmon here, how I miss that east coast seafood, especially oysters and Md Blue Crabs.

    Your grilled oysters look absolutely beautiful!

  11. LOVE raw oysters and grilled as well - these look superb. I'm curious how hard it is to keep the precious liquor inside if you open them first. I think the grilled oysters I tried were opened after, but I can't remember. I love them both with a squish of lemon and a dash of Tabasco. My mouth is watering just thinking about them.

  12. Roasted is about the only way I'll eat oysters (fire roasted, like yours of course). Nice job, Larry!

    Good timing too. With the cost of gas going up, seafood is likely to become exorbitantly priced here.


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