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Grilled Oysters with Garlic-Chile Butter

Photo courtesy of Donald Link

Recipe courtesy of Chef Donald Link, Chef/Owner of Herbsaint, Cochon, Cochon Butcher and Calcasieu

Recipe part of New Orleans All The Way Live episode, "Louisiana Cajun Zydeco Festival 2012."

Makes ½ pound compound butter, enough for 16 oysters

Compound butter for oysters:
1/2 pound (2 sticks) butter
3 cloves garlic
2 anchovy fillets
Zest of one lemon
Juice of one lemon (about 2 tablespoons)
2 tablespoons Vietnamese garlic chile paste
2 teaspoons crushed red chile flakes
¼ teaspoon cayenne
1 teaspoon salt
16 Oysters, in the shell
Lemon wedges, for garnish

Directions:
Cut the butter into 1-inch cubes and allow it to soften to room temperature.

Mince the garlic, anchovy, and lemon zest (or mash in a mortar and pestle), and then fold in the butter, lemon juice, garlic chili sauce, red pepper flakes, cayenne, and salt. Roll the butter into a log, wrap with plastic and refrigerate until needed. Open the oysters as you would for oysters on the half shell, discarding the top shells. Place 1-tablespoon slice of the chilled compound butter on each oyster and place on a hot grill until oysters begin to bubble and the oyster curls up around the edges, 6 to 10 minutes. (It’s good to melt a few tablespoons of butter to put on the oysters after they are grilled in case some of the butter spills out of the shells.) Serve immediately, with wedges of fresh lemon, if desired.

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