OYTSTERS KILPATRICK “THE AUSTRALIAN GEM”
In 2005, I had the pleasure of studying abroad in Melbourne, Australia. It is by far the food Mecca of down under. People don’t drink Fosters beer, they don’t throw boomerangs and they don’t have pet kangaroos, although they do taste delicious. Cultures collide here to bring you some of the most unique blend of food across the world. There is everything from Little Italy to China Town, or if you prefer to just throw something on the “barbie.” Food rules this city and rightfully so.
Geographically, Melbourne is within a reels throw away from the water, which supplies some of the freshest seafood to the city. Until living there, I had developed a weird aversion to eating anything from the ocean. I had a somewhat traumatic experience that made me, a once seafood loving kid, avoid it like the plague.
I had started off easy and ventured into the realm of shrimp, it was like kindergarten for crustacean eaters. Before, I knew it I had graduated and was eating swordfish & dory (the blue fish from “Finding Nemo.” she was delicious). The only next step was to go completely out of my comfort zone: Oysters.
Never had I thought I would have a plate of “Oysters Kilpatrick” in front of me and actually be willing to try them. My family (some, who happens to live in Australia) assured me that they were not fishy and easy to eat. Not only were they right, I couldn’t stop eating them. I began ordering them out wherever I went and now here I am back in New York, and I am making them myself.
1 Dozen Fresh Oysters
Few slices of thick cut bacon
Flat-Leaf Parsley (optional)
Salt & Pepper
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Clean oysters properly and then carefully shuck them. The best way I know of shucking, is to place the oyster in a towel and carefully insert your shucking tool into the narrow end of the oyster, then wiggle back and forth until able to pry open.
The towel acts as a stabilizer and it also protects your hands from the tool. Discard the top shell and separate meat from lower shell, return to shell.
Place oysters on baking tray, lined with foil, which also has a layer of rock salt (rock salt will hold the oysters steady and stop them tipping and spilling their juices).
Next, I take small tabs of butter and place them on top of each oyster. Followed by a couple shots of Worcestershire sauce on top. Then a few cranks of fresh ground pepper and a light sprinkle of salt (optional). Then a few pieces of dices bacon on top of each, as little or much as you want.
Place in the preheated oven for 5-10 mins, until the bacon crisps up. Remove from oven and serve right off the tray, the rock salt stabilizes them better than any serving platter will. I then garnish with some fresh flat-leaf parsley and serve with lemon wedges.
Enjoy. Make sure you slurp up the juice that’s left over or dunk some bread into it. This was my way of bringing a little of Australia home with me.