Kumamoto Oysters with Watermelon Granita, Cucumber and Serrano Chili Paper 

Back in the day, when I was shlepping jobs to get through culinary school, I was an Oyster Shucker in a fancy seafood restaurant. I always slurped down a few of my own at the end of the night. So many varieties, but my favorite remains the petite Kumamoto oyster, and now I am sharing my favorite way to enjoy them. Nothing like a fresh, sweet, succulent oyster topped with my fresh cucumber; melon granita.

To make your life easier, prepare the melon granita ahead of time— and store it in the freezer for up to one week. This recipe is a delicious variation on a classic mignonette.

Kumamoto Oysters are not only delicious, but because of their deep-cupped shells, they are great for holding delicious sauces and toppings, plus they are classic for their petite meats accompanied by a very mild brine perfect for a first-timer! Kumomoto Oysters have a distinctly sweet flavor with a lovely honeydew finish. One of my favorites !

Gigi Shucking Kumomoto Oysters

You’ll Need:

8 ounces of sweet watermelon, cantaloupe or honey dew. Washed, peeled and cut into small dice

10-12 ounces of watermelon (for the granita)

1/2 fresh lemon, zested and juiced

Sea salt and freshly ground pepper

1-2 dozen fresh Kumamoto oysters, scrubbed well

1 english cucumber, peeled de-seeded and cut into small dice- about the same size as the melon

1 spring fresh baby thyme leaves

1 fingerling lime,

Fresh edible flowers

1 Serrano chili, cut paper thin

Crushed ice

Here’s How :

In the bowl of your food processor puree the 10-12 ounces of melon until smooth. Strain mixture through a fine sieve into a 5-by-9-inch  non-reactive small shallow glass pan. Discarding any solids. Stir in lemon juice, and zest add a pinch of salt. Taste, and adjust seasoning with additional salt if necessary. Cover and freeze until firm, a minimum of 3 hours, scraping with a fork every hour.

When completely frozen, scrape it again until fluffy. Set aside in the freezer while shucking oysters. Once oysters are cleaned and shucked and arrange on a bed of crushed ice, or rock salt and fresh sea grass for garnish.

Remove watermelon granita from the freezer and top each oyster with about 1 teaspoon each, making sure to place on the narrow end of the oyster shell. Top with diced cucumbers, a fresh baby thyme leaf, and a few beads from the fingerling lime. Complete by topping off with a paper thin slice of serrano chili.

Serve immediatly with Ice Cold Vodka shots, petals of edible flowers and micro-green to complete.

Published by Chef Gigi Gaggero, Host of Silicon Valley's LIVE Food Talk Radio on KSCU 103.3 FM

Professional Chef, Two Time Award-Winning Book Author, Former Academic Director from Le Cordon Bleu, and Host of Silicon Valley's LIVE Food Talk Radio on KSCU 103.3 FM

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