Right – whisk together and serve for guests to help themselves with fresh oysters on the half shell. Season oysters with a sprinkle of sea salt and optional grinding of freshly ground black pepper. This dressing will be enough for at least a dozen oysters, and can easily be doubled for more.
With a cyclone warning to be heeded we caught the ferry back to the mainland from Waiheke yesterday. It was sad to say goodbye, especially with a blue-sky day thumbing it’s nose at the forecast and the first of the Merlot grapes being picked. However, as the set up is more camping there than anything else, head back we did – and the last thing I packed (actually in typical fashion I forgot them and had to turn back 5 minutes down the road) were these superb Te Matuku Bay oysters, locally sourced, plump, pale and sweet. You’d think from that description that I am an oyster-lover, but with blushing face I have to admit to being a total heathen, I am not – it’s Nick who is the ardent oyster fan. So then, for Nick I rustled up a super-simple mignonette dressing – a perfect astringent partner to that creamy, briney sweetness (gettin’ all Nigella on it)…
1/3 cup champagne vinegar (or chardonnay or other white wine vinegar)
1 tsp caster sugar
3 tbsp finely (as fine as you can get them, I haven’t the patience for super super fine) chopped shallots