Friday, August 12, 2005

oysters with ginger and scallions

craving shellfish, i checked out the pint of shucked oysters...they raised the price by a dollar! hmph. still a bargain though--for 8 large pieces you get the dish for much less than ordering at the restaurant, and husband has graciously demurred, it is better. thanks hon.

the recipe is from Grace Young's compilation, The Breath of a Wok. it is tucked away under the title "Nevil Lim's Oyster Chicken", using chicken meat. but a closer look at the recipe made me think it'd be perfect for my fat oysters.

marinate the pint of oysters (i did not drain off its liquor) in 1 tsp. cornstarch, 1 tsp. canola oil, 1 tsp. rice wine, 1/2 tsp. soy sauce, 1/8 tsp. ground white pepper and a drop of sesame oil. set aside.

in a small bowl combine 1/4 cup chicken broth, 2 tbsps. oyster sauce, 1/8 tsp. black soy sauce, 1/8 tsp. sugar, 1 tsp. rice wine, 1/8 tsp. pepper, and a drop of sesame oil (notice i don't like to use too much of this strong flavor.)
set aside.

chop a bunch of scallions into 2-inch pieces, and lightly pound the white parts.
finely shred enough peeled ginger to make 1/4 cup.
finely slice a clove of garlic.
dredge the drained oysters in 1/3 cup of potato starch (cornstarch is a passable substitute) and let dry in a rack for 15 minutes.

heat up 1 cup of canola oil (or other flavorless oil) in a wok to 325F (test with a wooden chopstick to sizzling hot). carefully add the oysters, spreading out evenly in the wok. cook 3 to 4 minutes, or until light golden brown, turning with tongs. remove the oysters with a slotted spoon, drain on a paper towel-lined platter.

remove the oil and clean the wok. heat it again and add 1 tbsp. of oil. add the scallions and stir fry for 10 seconds. add the garlic and ginger, and stir fry 10 seconds more. add the oysters and stir in the broth mixture swirling and stir frying until just combined and the oysters are warmed through.

they turned out so sweet and luscious...