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Oysters with Lime Vinaigrette


Eating oysters does not directly translate into sexy time. I know this because my wife once ate 35 fried oysters in a fried oyster eating competition and take my word, she wasn’t feeling sexy. But, if you believe they have aphrodisiac qualities then you should try this new vinaigrette to sex up your oyster platter. Just don’t eat 35 of them.

This is from Marcus Samuelsson’s New American Table. He suggests Kumamoto oysters but I’d choose whatever your fish monger recommends. My fish monger recommended Malpeques, so I took her advice.

One thing I learned from Marcus in preparing oysters is that in restaurants, oysters are shucked and refrigerated with the brine. The shells are then boiled in water for two minutes to “make the half shell presentation more elegant”. Who knew?

Good luck oyster hunters.  Here’s to some sexy time.



  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 shallots minced
  • 2 garlic cloves minced
  • 1 serrano chili, seeds and ribs removed, chopped
  • 1 ½ teaspoons sugar
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 1 tablespoon chopped cilantro
  • 2 tablespoons chopped chives
  • 12 small oysters like Kumamoto
  • Sea salt
  • 2 cups of kosher salt



  1. To make the vinaigrette, heat the olive oil in a small sauté pan over medium heat. Add the shallots, garlic and chili and sauté until the shallots are softened, about 2 minutes.
  2. Add the sugar, soy sauce and vinegar and stir until the sugar dissolves. Remove from the heat and stir in the lime juice, cilantro and chives. Let cool to room temperature.
  3. Rinse the oysters under cold water then shuck them.
  4. Cut the muscle that attaches the oysters to the top of the shell. Place the oysters in a bowl with their juices and refrigerate.
  5. Bring the shells to a boil in a large pot of water and boil for 2 minutes. Remove from the heat and rinse under cold water until the shells are cool.
  6. Place each oyster in a clean shell and spoon the vinaigrette over the top. Sprinkle with sea salt. Arrange the oysters on a bed of kosher salt or ice.

Suggested pairing: Champagne and Boz Scaggs' Silk Degrees on level 4. 





Reader Comments (8)

I'm seriously addicted to oysters, so I can't stay here for too long......and Kumamots are my favorite ones :)

May 23, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterM.

sorry for the typo.....meant Kumamoto (of course)

May 23, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterM.

What the hell? Pre-shucking oysters? What kind of crappy restaurants are these? In Seattle, New York and other cities, oysters are freshly shucked to order. The whole point is that they were alive seconds before. This makes me very angry.

May 24, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterSalanth

@M - Thanks for the comments. I'm addicted to oysters as well. And the Joy Behar show, of course. Whatever you do, don't put oysters and a TV with the HLN Network on in the same room with me. Absolute carnage, I tell ya.

@Salanth - I too was shocked by the boiling of the oyster shells. But I wouldn't go so far to say that Marcus Samuelsson runs crappy restaurants. Here's a run down of the chef's accolades:
And please don't be angry. Eat some more oysters with lime vinaigrette. This should make you happy.

May 26, 2010 | Registered Commentermykitchenmoovement

Something about those shallots is making these oysters look ridiculously appetizing. Great pics.

May 30, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterR. Luskey

I made this dish last night with 50 kumamoto oysters, and it was delish!!!! Even the kids liked them.
Thank you for something new and different!
I will be back to your site for more, I am a new fan.

June 23, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterregina

@Regina - Wow! that's a lot of shucking! I'm glad you tried something different and not the standard cocktail sauce and lemon juice. Thanks for reading.

June 23, 2010 | Registered Commentermykitchenmoovement

I will be serving this recipe at our (now) 6th annual (wedding anniversary and general hell raising) camping corral at Dose Wallips State Park with about 20 of our friends. We are fortunate to harvest Hood Canal oysters. We go out and get our limits at the best low tide. The results are well, imagine near heaven... And we can eat raw oysters as we harvest. Shivers... This, combined with my Lundy's cheesecake, good beer, wine, and a potluck of offerings from friends will make for a great evening. Note - We must leave our shells on the beach here in WA, so I will use purchased shells. Actually, the boiling of shells makes some sense. Thars lots of nasty stuff in those shells. Thanks for the recipe. Nancy

May 1, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterNancy O

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