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Crispy Fried Oysters, MoPho Mayo and Blue Cheese

Words: Michael Gulotta
Photos: Randy Schmidt
 
 
I cannot get enough fried oysters. Over the years I have wanted my oysters spicier and funkier. I can’t remember where I had my first oyster and blue cheese po’ boy, but I know I doused it in hot sauce and that was where it all started. The original concept for this dish was just fried oysters over a fermented red pepper mayonnaise with some blue cheese crumbled on top, but I added the nuoc mam to the mayo to accentuate the brininess of the oysters. From there, the more we served it, the more it evolved, and all of the cooks weighed in until it assumed its current form.

This dish is crispy, creamy, funky, briny, and spicy. In that order. The breakfast radish can be found at any grocery store or farmers’ market in the spring, and can be used throughout the recipe in place of daikon (feel free to also substitute Easter Egg or Watermelon radish). The gochujang and nuoc mam need to be purchased in an Asian market, as well as a good seasoned rice wine vinegar.

Crispy Fried Oysters with MOPHO Mayo & Pickled Blue Cheese Vinaigrette
Serves 6
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Ingredients
  1. 1 quart Gulf oysters, drained
  2. 8 large egg whites, lightly beaten
  3. Oyster Dredge Makes 1 quart (recipe follows)
  4. Canola oil, for frying
  5. Salt, to taste
  6. MOPHO Mayo Makes 1 cup (recipe follows)
  7. Pickled Blue Cheese Vinaigrette Makes about 1 cup (recipe follows)
  8. Garnish: shaved French Breakfast radishes, fresh small basil leaves, fresh dill
Instructions
  1. In a medium bowl, gently combine oysters and egg whites. In a large bowl, place Oyster Dredge; toss oysters in Oyster Dredge. Coat evenly, shaking off any excess.
  2. In a heavy-bottomed skillet, pour oil to a depth of 2 inches, and heat over medium-high heat until a deep-fry thermometer registers 360°. Carefully drop oysters into oil, one at a time, and fry until golden, 1 to 2 minutes, turning if necessary. The oysters should be crispy on the outside but still juicy on the inside. With a slotted spoon, remove oysters carefully, and drain on paper towel-lined trays. Sprinkle hot oysters with salt.
  3. Serve oysters atop a dollop of MOPHO Mayo, drizzle with Pickled Blue Cheese Vinaigrette, and garnish with radish, basil, and dill, if desired.
Chefs to Watch http://www.chefstowatch.com/
Oyster Dredge
Yields 1
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Ingredients
  1. 1 cup rice flour
  2. 1 cup corn flour
  3. 1 cup cornmeal
  4. 1 cup all-purpose flour
  5. 1 cup panko (Japanese bread crumbs), pulsed in blender
  6. 1½ teaspoons garlic powder
  7. ½ teaspoon celery salt
  8. ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
  9. ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper
Instructions
  1. In a large bowl, combine all ingredients.
Chefs to Watch http://www.chefstowatch.com/
MOPHO Mayo
Yields 1
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Ingredients
  1. 1 cup mayonnaise
  2. ½ tablespoon fermented red pepper paste
  3. ½ tablespoon rice wine vinegar
  4. ½ teaspoon fish sauce
  5. 1 clove garlic, minced
Instructions
  1. In a medium bowl, combine all ingredients. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour to marry flavors.
Chefs to Watch http://www.chefstowatch.com/
Pickled Blue Cheese Vinaigrette
Yields 1
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Ingredients
  1. ¾ cup canola or vegetable oil, divided
  2. ½ clove garlic, minced
  3. ¼ teaspoon grated fresh ginger, plus more to taste
  4. ¼ Thai chile, seeded and minced
  5. ¼ cup rice wine vinegar, plus more to taste
  6. ½ teaspoon soy sauce
  7. ½ teaspoon fish sauce, plus more to taste
  8. 1 tablespoon minced yellow onion
  9. 1 tablespoon minced Dikon radish
  10. ¼ teaspoon Korean red pepper flakes
  11. Sesame oil, to taste
  12. 1½ ounces blue cheese, crumbled
Instructions
  1. In a medium saucepan, heat 1 tablespoon canola or vegetable oil over medium heat. Add garlic, ginger, and chile; toast until fragrant, about 2 minutes. Add vinegar, soy sauce, and fish sauce; cook 2 minutes more. Remove from heat.
  2. Once mixture has reached room temperature, whisk in onion, radish, red pepper, and remaining canola or vegetable oil. Season to taste with sesame oil, ginger, vinegar, and fish sauce.
  3. Once vinaigrette is completely cooled, add blue cheese. Marinate overnight in the refrigerator.
Chefs to Watch http://www.chefstowatch.com/
Crispy Fried Oysters

Crispy Fried Oysters

2017-01-12T13:07:33+00:00

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