Imagine you’re on a trip to an oyster farm for the first time. You purchase a dozen or so raw oysters and plop down on a picnic table with a bottle of hot sauce and lemon wedge to top the oysters, along with some cheese, crackers, and a cold beer to pair with it. You have your shucking knife poised in hand, ready to indulge. Then it hits you, you’ve never actually shucked an oyster. All that experience you have slurping down these delicacies was either at an oyster bar or restaurant that served them up pre-shucked on the half shell. Don’t worry, you don’t need to resort to smashing the thing with a rock because with the help of ChefSteps you’ll be able to shuck an oyster like a pro.
Calling in the fastest shuckers, ChefSteps turned to Marco Pinchot of the popular oyster company Tayler Shellfish to show us how to shuck an oyster properly. Shucking about 30 gallons of oysters a day, this Washington business knows their stuff. Grab your oyster knife, a heavy duty glove, and lets get started.
Now, let’s break down how to shuck oysters. To begin, you’ll need to hold the oyster flat side up. This will enable you to wriggle your sharp knife into the shell. Next, use the knife to pierce the hinge located on the bottom of the oyster shell – or should I say the pointy part. Give the knife blade a good twist until you hear a popping noise. Congratulations, you’ve managed to pry open the oyster. Your work is not finished though.
From there you’ll need to slice through the muscle that is sticking to the roof of the shell, working your way around the sides as you do. Alas, the oyster is shucked! Shucking oysters the right way wasn’t as hard as you thought, now was it?
Unless you wan’t a little extra crunch and brine with your shucked oysters, check for any loose shell bits and discard. Once that’s all settle, it’s time to dress up the oyster meat. Some horseradish and a hint of lemon juice, a mignonette, cocktail sauce, maybe a little ceviche, a simple dose of hot sauce, or even plain will all taste amazing. Go on, slurp down the dozen any way you like, you deserve it!
Can’t get enough oysters? Check out these 15 scrumptious oyster recipes.