I will indeed post the Block Island portion of my most recent adventure, but for now — this is just a recipe for an oyster mignonette.
After eating oysters a few times during this recent trip, I surfed around (the internet, not the ocean) and came up with ideas for a sauce to go with the oysters. Yes, you can just squeeze lemon onto them — and that is an awesome choice. You can splash a dab of Tabasco or some other hot sauce on them, and I like that, too. You can use cocktail sauce (tomato ketchup and horseradish) or just plain horseradish. Yum.
But this past weekend I discovered something called “Mignonette”.
The essential recipe turns out to be vinegar and finely diced shallots. Anything else is gravy (as it were). But a lot of restaurants apparently will riff off of this basic. Think of it as salad dressing without the oil.
So, since I brought home 0.4 pounds of shucked oysters from Chaplin’s (I bought them out of any remaining stock…), I decided to come up with my own Mignonette, based on a surfing through the Internet, and considering what was already in my own larder.
Here we go, and it really did work for me, but mind you, I didn’t truly measure anything:
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
Juice from 1/3rd of a good lime
1.5 finely diced slices of onion (shallot would be preferred, dice up about half of one; but as I did not go out to shop…. anyhow, shallot OR onion)
Fresh cilantro, roughly chopped and to taste. (Dill might be a nice alternative for the Cilantro-disliking…)
Let everything except the cilantro soak together overnight.
Add the cilantro before use.
If you have the oyster in its shell, all the best. Personally, I simply know I’d get a knife through my palm eventually, should I attempt shucking them myself. I ate them one at a time from a spoon. Don’t discard the oyster liquor. With another spoon, add about 1/4-1/2 teaspoon of the mignonette to each oyster, making sure to include some of the shallots / onions.
I also tried this with slices of conch (cooked), and that was good, too. I am going to toss the little that remains over my salad, tomorrow.