Thursday, June 26, 2008


How I love oysters! This has been one of my favorites. A fresh, spanking plate can really make my day or even week, if I'd be given two plates. :-) It has been a while since I had my share. I believe it was some two wedding anniversaries ago. It's really been a while now. I can so relate with Ernest Hemingway when he said:

“As I ate the oysters with their strong taste of the sea and their faint metallic taste that the cold white wine washed away, leaving only the sea taste and the succulent texture, and as I drank their cold liquid from each shell and washed it down with the crisp taste of the wine, I lost the empty feeling and began to be happy and to make plans.” — Ernest Hemingway, A Moveable Feast

And how about a top notch oyster recipe from a top notch chef, Ernest Reynoso Gala:

Oysters Rockefeller

1. 24 large oysters; wash, scrub, remove upper shells.

2. One oven-proof serving tray; sprinkle 2 cups rock salt on a tray. Put oysters on top (the rock salt will keep the oysters in place).

3. For the topping: 1/2 cup finely chopped bacon

4. Sauce: 1/2 cup Magnolia Gold butter, 2 tbsps. each of finely chopped white onion and chopped parsley, 1 cup blanched and drained spinach or kangkong leaves, 1/2 tsp. each of rock salt and pepper, 1/2 cup fresh milk and 1/2 cup grated Quickmelt Cheese.

5. Procedure: Put butter, onions, parsley in a medium saucepan and cook over medium heat for two minutes. Turn off fire and mix in spinach/kangkong, salt, pepper, milk, cheese.

6. Spoon spinach mixture on oysters. Top each with a teaspoon of bacon. Bake at 400°F or 200°C for 12 minutes. Serve one with cocktail forks. Serve 6 to 8.

7. Note: To blanch spinach or kangkong leaves, boil one cup water in a pan. Add two cups spinach leaves. Cook for two minutes until wilted. Drain.

And if you just can't afford to run the risk of failing as you you try the above recipe yourself, then you might just want to go to any of the restaurants below and gobble up those spanking great oysters without fussing over ingredients and worrying about failing.

Here are the aforementioned chef's best oyster restos:

1) Via Mare Oyster Bar, Rockwell: Top-quality oysters, some of the best in the country!

2) Heat, Edsa Shagri-La Hotel, Mandaluyong: I always line up at the buffet line to taste some of the sweetest, mouthwatering, fresh oysters you can find.

3) Mr. Rockefeller, 2nd level, Greenbelt 3, Makati City: The cheese oozes and definite value for money!

4) Restaurant Red, Makati, Shangri-La: The lemongrass-steamed New Zealand oysters with cauliflower, panna cotta, and Osetra caviar are a masterpiece!

5) Harbor View Restaurant: Oysters are topnotch and great quality. Great View of Manila Bay! Located at South Gate A, Rizal Park (between Manila Hotel and the US Embassy).