RECIPE: OYSTERS ROCKEFELLER

Claudio's Oysters Rockefeller

The original recipe for Oysters Rockefeller, a dish dating back to 1899, was literally taked to the grave by chef Jules Alciatore, chef of New Orleans restaurant Antoine's. It is said that the dish was created during a shortage of french snails, which were used for their popular dish, escargot. As it turns out, butter, herbs and breadcrumbs were the perfect topping to oysters as well. Unlike snails, which needed a vessel to bake in, oysters had a natural shell that can withstand heat. The dish was so rich from all the butter, that when it came to naming it, what better namesake than the wealthiest man at the time, John D. Rockefeller. 

Over the years, the core ingredients of oysters rockefeller have classicly remainded oysters, butter, spinach, parmesan and breadcrumbs, though we've seen versions with kale and parsely, bechemel, capers and pernod. Eric Kuna, Chef of Claudio's Restaurant, a Greenport, LI, institution since the 1800s, has shared with us his famous Oysters Rock, which includes one of our favorite ingredients, sriracha!

Heading to the Island? Add Claudio's to your must-eat-at list of restaurants. Need to live vicariously? You can find Claudio's on Instagram @claudiosgreenport or Twitter @ClaudiosGrnport. 

Claudio's Oysters Rockefeller

By: Yield:
24 oysters

Shopping List

  • 4 Tbsp unsalted butter
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 cup thin sliced fennel
  • 1 dash of scriracha
  • 2/3 cup bread crumbs, Panko
  • 2 shallots, chopped
  • 2 cups chopped fresh spinach
  • 1/4 cup Pernod
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1/4 Cup grated Parmesan
  • 1 Tbsp chopped chervil or parsley
  • 2 dozen oysters, on the half shell
  • Lemon wedges, for garnish

Directions

MIGNONETTE SAUCE: In a bowl, whisk together red wine vinegar, shallots, cracked black peppercorns, parsley and lemon. Cover and chill. Serve with oysters.

STEPS & ASSEMBLY: Melt butter in a skillet. Sauté garlic for 2 minutes to infuse the butter. Place 1/3 cup bread crumbs in a mixing bowl and add half the garlic butter, set aside. To the remaining garlic butter in the skillet, add shallots, fennel and spinach, cook for 3 minutes until the spinach wilts. Deglaze the pan with Pernod. Add a dash of scriracha sauce. Allow the mixture to cook down. Finish off by adding 1/3 cup bread crumbs and Parmesan and parsley season with salt and pepper. Spoon 1 tablespoon of the spinach mixture on each oyster and sprinkle extra breadcrumb on top. Arrange the oysters on cooking sheet or pan. Bake in a preheated 450 degree F oven for 10 to 15 minutes until golden. Serve with lemon wedges and mignonette. 

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