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Recipe for :

Oyster Loaves

This recipe comes from The Geat British Kitchen web site and has been reproduced with the permission of The British Food Trust which runs the site.

The British Food Trust website is a major resource for all those in the UK and around the world who are enthusiasts for British cooking, its past traditions and future potential. Most of the recipes on Trust's web site are indeed traditional and, taken together, define the legacy of British Cuisine. But of course cooking and recipes are ever-changing, no more so than with British cooking, which has always been hugely influenced by other cultures, many of which are now part and parcel of our contemporary cuisine. The Trust's overriding interest, then, is not that everything in the Kitchen should be the pre-War idea of British, important though that foundation is, but to share and enjoy the rich diversity of the culinary life that is readily found in the British Kitchen today (wherever in the world that Kitchen may be!).

The Trust is a registered charity (Number 1064844), the aim of which is to stimulate the awareness and involvement of the general public in British food and cooking and to foster the production, supply and consumption of good food.

To visit the The Great British Kitchen web site for recipes or to find out more about The British Food Trust <click here>

Whitstable in Kent was once renowned for its oysters, although the beds are no longer farmed extensively. This recipe dates back to when oysters were very cheap. For a budget version, substitute mussels or lightly cooked baby scallops or clams, with a drop of fish stock in place of the oyster juices.

Ingredients

4 miniature brioches, baby cottage loaves
100 gram butter, melted (4 oz)
12 large oysters
120 ml soured cream (4 fl oz)
Cayenne pepper
Lemon zest and parsley sprigs, to garnish

Method

  • Pre-heat oven to 220 °C / 425 °F / Gas 7.
  • Remove the top knobs of the brioches, loaves or rolls. Carefully scoop out all the inside, leaving just a wall of crust and taking care not to pierce the crust.
  • Brush the crust shells, inside and out, with half of the melted butter, place on a baking sheet and bake for 5 - 10 minutes, until they are crisp.
  • Scrub the oysters, then, holding each one in a cloth, flat side uppermost, prise open the shells at the hinge. Loosen the oysters, reserving their liquor for the sauce.
  • Add the liquor to the remaining melted butter in a small saucepan, bring to the boil and boil for a few minutes to reduce the liquid.
  • Stir in the cream and heat gently. Do not boil or the mixture will curdle.
  • Add a little cayenne pepper according to taste.
  • Put the oysters into the crust shells and spoon over the sauce.
  • Garnish with lemon zest and parsley. Accompany with a green salad.

Serves 4

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