These easy baked oysters are flavored with a buttery herb crumb topping. A little lemon juice adds zing to the oysters, and panko crumbs make the topping extra crunchy.
A layer of rock salt or uncooked rice keeps the oyster shells from wobbling in the baking pan.
If you prefer a variety of herbs, consider fresh chopped thyme leaves or fresh marjoram. For garlic flavor, see the tips and variations below the recipe.
- 1 dozen fresh oysters (in the shell)
- 1 stick butter (8 tablespoons, softened, divided)
- 3/4 cup panko bread crumbs
- 2 tablespoons chives (finely chopped)
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon lemon zest (finely grated)
- Optional: sweet paprika
- Garnish: fresh chopped parsley
- 2 to 3 wedges lemon (for serving)
Heat the oven to 425° F (220° C/Gas 7). Add a layer of rock salt to a rimmed baking sheet, or substitute dry, uncooked rice. This will keep the oyster shells from wobbling.
Scrub the oyster shells with a stiff brush. Carefully shuck the oysters over a bowl (to catch any liquids that might spill out). Run the knife along the bottom of the inside of the shell to loosen the oyster, If some of the oyster liquor does spill out, return it to the bottom shell.
Discard the top shells and arrange the oysters with their liquid in the prepared baking pan.
In a skillet over medium heat, melt 4 tablespoons of the butter. Add the panko crumbs and cook, stirring, until the crumbs are lightly browned.
In a bowl combine the remaining 4 tablespoons of softened butter with the snipped chives, lemon juice, and the lemon zest.
Top each oyster with a scant teaspoon of the butter and chives mixture and then sprinkle each one with the buttered panko crumbs.
If desired, finish with a light sprinkling of paprika.
Bake the oysters in the preheated oven for about 8 to 10 minutes, or until the oysters are cooked through and the topping is golden brown.
Sprinkle with fresh chopped parsley and serve with lemon wedges.
Tips and Variations
Garlic and Herb Baked Oysters - Add a small, finely minced clove of garlic to the butter in the skillet. Cook in the butter for 1 minute before you add the panko crumbs, and then continue with the recipe.
Grilled Herb and Butter Oysters - Preheat the grill to high heat. Prepared the oysters following the recipe above. Place the pan on the grill grate, close the lid, and grill for about 6 to 8 minutes.
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