Ingredients (Serves 4)
- 24 fresh oysters
- 3 slices white bread, crusts removed
- 75g/3oz Gruyère, grated
- 2 tbsp finely chopped fresh parsley
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Tabasco, to taste
First shuck the fresh oysters (see below). Lift off the top shell, beingcareful not to lose any of the oyster liquor. Set aside.
Preheat the grill.
Whizz the slices of white bread in a food processor to make fine crumbs. Transfer them to a bowl, add the grated cheese and the chopped parsley, season with salt and freshly ground black pepper, and stir well.
Arrange the oysters in a shallow baking tin and shake 2 drops of Tabasco onto each one, or adjust according to taste. Spoon approximately 2 tsp of the breadcrumb, cheese and parsley mix over each oyster to cover the flesh completely, then place them under the preheated hot grill for 4 minutes, or until the crumbs are crispy.
Carefully transfer the oysters to a platter and serve immediately, while they are still hot.
To shuck fresh oysters, you need a thick tea towel and an oyster knife (or couteau à huitres), which has a short fat blade and guard. Wrap the tea towel around the wrist and hand holding the oyster, in case the knife slips. Carefully insert the blade of the knife into the narrow hinge end of the shell, then work the knife until the ligament is severed. Next, prise the top and bottom shells apart by working the blade around between them. Remove the top shell, then loosen the oyster from the bottom one.