This recipe created by Jeff Senior is the quintessential summer comfort food. This is a great appetizer or light meal and pairs perfectly with the Pinot Grigio Barone Fini Valdadige.
Oysters Casino with Melted Herb Butter and Pancetta
12 Oysters of choice (deep cup works the best)
1/2 Stalk of leeks, sliced & washed
2 oz Minced cherry peppers
1/4 Slab pancetta sliced into 1/4 inch batons, blanched in boiling water then shocked
2 oz Parsley, chopped
1/2 oz Chopped garlic/shallot mix
1/2 cup Panko bread crumbs
1 stick Whole butter
Salt & Pepper to taste
Pinch of red pepper flakes
White wine for deglazing
Casino Butter Preparation
1. Soften butter so it is easy to whip into a compound butter.
2. In a hot sauté pan add half of the blanched pancetta and render until crispy.
3. Add cherry peppers and garlic/shallot mix and sauté until translucent.
4. Deglaze the pan with white wine and add a pinch of red pepper flakes.
5. Reduce the wine and add half of the leeks and parsley. Sauté until tender and lay out on a sheet pan to cool.
6. Season the butter to taste with your salt and pepper.
7. In a mixer, combine butter and sautéed mixture until well incorporated.
8. Add half the panko bread crumbs to the mix and mix with a paddle not a whip.
9. Roll the compound butter into logs with plastic and chill.
1. Take remainder of the leeks and sauté them on low heat with 2 oz butter and a touch of olive oil to wilt them or butter poach them and season.
2. Flash fry the remainder of blanched pancetta until crispy.
1. Shuck your oysters. Keep as much oyster juice inside the shell as possible.
2. Top each oyster with a nice slice of the compound butter, then a pinch of buttered panko bread crumbs.
3. Bake the oysters in a 350 degree oven for 4 minutes, rotate and finish cooking for another 3 minutes or until butter is fully melted and panko topping is golden brown.
4. Garnish each oyster with a touch of melted leeks and crispy pancetta.
5. Serve on a bed of dressed arugula, some type of slaw, or maybe a salt to prevent the oysters from rolling around on the plate.