Harvest the health benefits of the sea’s most opulent treasure and enjoy a sybaritic, nutritious delicacy from the comfort of your own home
Lean and nutrient-rich, oysters are a worthy addition to your meal prep. Time to shell out
01 GOING NATIVE
The oyster tops MH’S uber-food list for good reason. Low calorie and high protein, it contains nature’s most potent health enhancers – zinc, potassium, selenium and iron. Better still, the finest are sustainably farmed in the UK: “The waters surrounding the British Isles cleanse our oysters, giving them a unique purity,” says oyster authority Jeremy Lee of London’s Quo Vadis. “They are a veritable luxury.” Take advantage of these pearls of wisdom.
02 SHUCKS GIVEN
As with meat and vegetables, you should aim to buy the highest-quality oysters your budget will allow. Waitrose sells them for around 80p each, but a fishmonger can source you local varieties – given you provide adequate notice. Store the oysters in the bottom of your fridge, the round side of the shell facing down to avoid leaking juice. When you’re ready to dish them up, grip each one firmly in the palm of your hand – a Carl Mertens stainless steel mesh oyster glove (£ 190 houzz.co.uk) will stop you slicing an artery – and insert a Wusthof oyster knife (£ 35 simplyoysters.com) into the hinge, or pointed end of the shell. Twist in the knife and, once securely in place, prise open to sever the oyster’s adductor muscle. You’ll hear a “shucking” noise as the top and bottom shells part. And, yes, it should feel satisfying.
03 DRESSED TO DOWN
Once your bivalves are open, loosen each oyster from its shell to make it easier to tip them into your mouth. Now, dress them with your choice of Lee’s adornments and sit them atop a platter – or tray of ice, if you’re one for showing off. Then all that’s left to do is get the sea’s own sports nutrition supplement down the hatch and smile.