OYSTERS BENEDICT

With the coming of fall, chefs look for entrees as flavorful as they are memorable. Often these dishes are unique variations of culinary classics.  One such altered dish is Oysters Benedict.

The original Eggs Benedict was, however, created when Lemuel Benedict, a retired Wall Street stock broker, wandered into New York’s famed Waldorf Hotel in 1894. He was hoping to find a cure there for his thundering morning hangover.

Once seated he ordered “buttered toast, poached eggs, crisp bacon, and a hooker of hollandaise sauce" according to Oscar Tschirky, the hotel’s legendary maitre d'. Soon the dish was a New York favorite.

To accommodate the dish’s growing popularity, Waldorf’s chefs substituted ham for bacon and a toasted English muffin replaced the buttered bread.

Not to be outdone the chefs of la belle New Orleans and Charleston soon featured the new dish on their brunch and luncheon menus BUT with one change. They replaced the ham with fried oysters.

And the result? An entrée sure to delight guests from coast to coast!

Fried Oysters Benedict

Ingredients

  • 2 pints of shucked Taylor Oysters
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • ¼  teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • Kosher salt
  • Canola oil
  • White Bread or English Muffin, sliced and toasted
  • 4 poached eggs
  • Old Bay Seasoning
  • Hollandaise Sauce

Directions

  1. Wash and drain the oysters and place in a small bowl.
  2. Parboil oysters briefly for 2-4 seconds until oysters tighten into a rounded ball shape.
  3. Drain and pat dry.
  4. Place flour, salt and cayenne pepper in a brown paper bag, close and shake to mix.
  5. In a large heavy bottomed pot, pour enough oil to fill halfway.
  6. Heat oil to 360 degrees F.
  7. Place oysters in small batches in the brown bag, close and shake to coat.
  8. When the oil has reached 360 degrees F, place oysters in pot, being sure not to over crowd.
  9. Cook, turning once, until golden brown and cooked throughout.  
  10. Repeat with remaining oysters.
  11. Remove to a paper towel and dust with Old Bay.
  12. To serve, place the desired amount of oysters on a toasted slice of English muffin.
  13. Top with poached eggs and hollandaise.
  14. Sprinkle with Old Bay Seasoning on top of the Hollandaise sauce and egg.