We are blessed by the number of local oyster farms in coastal towns close to Canberra. I was very glad to buy some, freshly shucked from a semi-retired farmer in Tathra on my last holiday.
I am a fan of eating oysters natural. But I’m also happy to splash on some Worcestershire sauce, some local bacon and enjoy them after a brief grill. Kilpatrick was my partner’s favourite way of enjoying them and there’s a guy at the farmers’ market who sells a great Worcestershire sauce.
After a day at the coast with my Nan, we’d pick up some oysters on the way home. She can’t stand oysters natural and has a penchant for topping them with sweet chilli sauce and melted cheese of all things. She was happy to add bacon too.
I simply adore native finger limes. There are a few places around town you can get them. If you see them, you really should snap them up. They’re handy to use in all sorts of ways. I make a mean pasta with finger lime, chilli, tuna and rocket. Finger lime and pepperberry are a great combination for a native dressing, especially if you want to dress a yabby salad. That of course brings me to the point. Finger limes are made up of caviar-like balls of citrus goodness. That citrus caviar makes the perfect topping for oysters. All you need do is cut a finger lime in half, squeeze out the ‘caviar’, spoon it atop your oysters, and enjoy!
Using native ingredients to accompany oysters seems particularly pertinent if your oyster in also native. Most of the oysters we eat are Pacific oysters. a variety originally from Japan. A disease that is deadly to oysters is threatening stocks and prompting producers to diversify. Some are returning to Australia’s native Angasi. I was very glad to try my first Angasi oyster at the farmers’ market on the weekend. They’re flatter than a Pacific oyster and have a beautiful flavour. You can eat one fresh at the market, after having it shucked before your very eyes. Will you give it a go? I’d like to buy half a dozen for a treat this weekend and serve them with a spoonful of that beautiful native finger lime ‘caviar’.