Thursday, January 01, 2015

Oyster in the rye

Among the traditions practiced during le réveillon de la Saint-Sylvestre (New Year's Eve) in France is the eating of huîtres (oysters). I'll bet that the largest sales of oysters in the nation happen during the end-of-year holiday celebrations. Ken and I did our part, getting two dozen oysters for our New Year's Eve meal, along with a mess of shrimp.

My home-made cocktail rye bread, without caraway seeds. I will make this again.

Oysters are traditionally eaten raw, on the half shell, with une sauce mignonette (vinegar, shallot, and black pepper) or lemon. Along with them you will often have small slices of rye bread spread with butter. I had some rye flour in the house, so I decided to make my own rye bread. It worked out well, and we gobbled most of it up with our oysters and shrimp.

Fresh oysters, ready for steaming, or just opening and eating as they are.

We cheated a little with the oysters and opened them by lightly steaming them in a hot oven. They come out not quite raw, but also not quite cooked. They were delicious, and a lot easier to open than raw oysters. We ate the shrimp with a basil-flavored mayonnaise. I didn't take any photos of those, but they were very tasty. Today we will have our traditional New Year's Day meal of black-eyed peas made in the style of a southwestern French cassoulet, with duck confit, sausages, and pork.

Happy New Year!


  1. Sounds good! Happy New Year!

  2. Happy New Year, Walt...
    may 2015 bring you what you wish for...

    Like the look of that rye bread...
    lovely texture!
    I use caraway seed for a flavour usually...
    and often add ground caraway, which I get from Lidl...
    but I have also used cumin seed...
    but not powder...
    and poppy seed works very nicely, too!

  3. Happy New year Walt! Could you send me some slices of that bread to go with the smoked salmon and 'oeufs brouillés' that I'm making as starter for today's NY lunch!

  4. HNY en France to you and ken!
    I make rye bread for the spouse, but he insists on the seeds.
    today is boneless pork roast and sauerkraut (his tradition) and plum pudding with brandy sauce (my tradition).

  5. Happy New Year! -- the food sounds good :-)

  6. Happy New Year, Walt. Looking forward to more of
    your baking and your superb photography in 2015.

  7. Walt,
    Oysters? Oh no, I remember when I was a kid my Mom used to make us eat oyster soup. I always swallowed the oysters whole. Chew them? Oh no. And shrimp? Actually I don't like any kind of seafood or crustaceans. Nothing that comes out of the water. The bread looks good.
    Have a great new year!

  8. Happy New Year to you too! I'm glad to be blogging again and following your meticulously maintained blog about your daily lives...

  9. Happy New Year! The rye looks great! It all sounds wonderful! Ken, loved your post today, too!

  10. Happy 2015 to you and Ken!

  11. May 2015 be a splendid year for you!
    I will pass on the oysters though.

  12. Good way to open oysters without opening your own hand! Thanks.
    I like your weather forecast on the side. 7 sounds good. 39 here today and hotter tomorrow.
    Happy 2015! Sue

  13. Happy New Year Walt.
    Had oysters from Nova Scotia on Sunday - we had friends over for supper. They were great - first time for me since I was never keen to try them when Y had them at home or on our trips to locations where we can get them fresh.


Tell me what you think!