It’s National Oyster Day, hooray!
Oysters on the half shell are so fun to have at home if you’re feeling brave and have the right equipment. Not to mention less expensive than a restaurant! Oftentimes, you can get them on sale at Whole Foods for $1.50 each. Spoiler: un-shucked oysters at home are NOT fun without the proper tools.
So make sure you have a shucking knife, shucking clamp, and shucking glove. (links below if you do not have these)
I suggest having a seat at the table and laying out some old dishtowels or a large towel (that you don’t mind getting really dirty.) Have an extra bowl for the half shells you don’t need. There will be a mess! And always, please be careful. You might be applying some pressure on tougher shells, and you’ve got a sharp object in your hand. Brad has definitely drawn a little blood on a couple of occasions!
Now, let’s rock…
Hold the oyster in your gloved, non-dominant hand with an oyster clamp. An extra towel around the oyster clamp might be helpful. Now, work the oyster knife into a tiny opening near the shell’s hinge, and twist the knife until the shell ‘pops’ open. Finding the right spot is almost an art form – every shell is different, might require different pressure, and it takes time to get this feeling down.
I like to have a large platter of ice ready to go so as I shuck them they can stay cold on the ice. Continue until you have all your oysters shucked.
PLEASE REMEMBER: Oysters are a live seafood so when purchasing them (we always get them at Whole Foods on sale) make sure the plastic bag doesn’t seal. The first time we bought oysters, I tied the bag in a knot so they wouldn’t spill and was quickly told this above by the cashier.
Serve these with horseradish and cocktail sauce. I recommend primal kitchens cocktail sauce, it’s great.
Here are a few items you might need for your oyster shucking at home!