Heart of Softness
July 23, 2016
When people ask about guilty pleasures, this is what I think of. Each crisp container enfolds an airy little pillow singing of the sea. Sprinkle of salt, splash of lemon – each one a perfect bite.
And so easy to make!
Shopping list: 1 pint oysters, 1 pint buttermilk, 2 cups cornmeal
Staples: flour, salt, oil.
You could shuck your own oysters, but unless you’re really an expert that makes the entire process a whole lot harder. I open my own oysters to eat on the half-shell, but when I’m frying oysters I buy them pre-shucked.
Carefully drain the oysters, and put them in 2 cups of buttermilk for about 10 minutes.
Line a baking sheet with waxed paper or a silpat pad. Mix 2 cups of cornmeal with 2 cups of flour and a teaspoon of salt. Pick up each oyster and dip it into the buttermilk. Shake it a bit, allowing the buttermilk to drip off before plunking it into the cornmeal mixture; toss it about so it’s coated on all sides and place it on the lined baking sheet. Do it with the next oyster, and the next….
In a deep pot heat at least 2 inches of oil until it registers 375 on a thermometer. Pick up an oyster, shake it to remove excess breading and plunk it into the oil. Fry for about a minute and a half until just golden, then remove with a slotted spoon and set on paper towels to drain. You should be able to fry 6 to 8 oysters at a time. Bring oil back to 375 before adding a new batch.
Sprinkle with salt and serve with plenty of fresh lemons. Some people like tartar sauce or remoulade with their oysters, but I think that masks the delicate flavor.
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I love fried oysters and will make this recipe soon. Thank you !
I love everything “Ruth Reichl”! I am addicted to her every word…just finished “Comfort me with Apples” & can’t wait to make Alice’s fried oysters!!!