Briny, Salty Oyster Hush Puppies
I love to make these oyster hush puppies for a crowd at my house. There’s nothing easier than standing in my kitchen frying batches of these superb oyster treats. I use my electric tabletop skillet because it allows me to work on my center island and stay with my guests. Have fun with the sauces for these hush puppies. I serve them with lemon-herb mayo, hot sauces and a big bowl of this acidic mojo for my friends to dip into.
How to shuck an oyster:
Oyster Hush Puppies
- 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 1/4 cup minced red bell pepper
- 1/4 cup minced yellow bell pepper
- 1/4 cup minced shallots
- 3 radishes, cut into thin matchsticks (1/4 cup)
- 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped cilantro
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped mint
- 1 1/2 teaspoons Asian fish sauce
- 1 jalapeño—stemmed, seeded and minced
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 1 teaspoon finely grated orange zest
- 2 cups fine stone-ground cornmeal
- 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 2 large eggs
- 1 large egg yolk
- 2 cups whole milk
- 1/2 stick unsalted butter or 1/4 cup rendered bacon fat, melted and cooled slightly
- 1/4 cup minced chives
- 36 shucked oysters, drained and chopped
- Vegetable oil, for frying
Make the Mojo
Make the Hush Puppies
In a large bowl, whisk the cornmeal with the flour, baking powder and a generous pinch of salt. In a medium bowl, beat the whole eggs and egg yolk with the milk, melted butter and chives. Stir the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients until smooth, then fold in the chopped oysters.
Meanwhile, in a large saucepan, heat 2 inches of oil to 350°. Working in batches, drop tablespoons of the batter into the oil and fry, turning gently, until puffed and golden, about 5 minutes; do not overcrowd the saucepan. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the hush puppies to a paper towel-lined baking sheet to drain. Serve with the pepper mojo.
Originally published in Andrew Zimmern’s Kitchen Adventures on foodandwine.com.
Photograph by Madeleine Hill.