Do you know what I was, how I lived? You know
what despair is; then
winter should have meaning for you.
I did not expect to survive,
earth suppressing me. I didn’t expect
to waken again, to feel
in damp earth my body
able to respond again, remembering
after so long how to open again
in the cold light
of earliest spring–
afraid, yes, but among you again
crying yes risk joy
in the raw wind of the new world.
The butter can be made up to 5 days ahead, wrapped well in the fridge, or up to several months ahead, kept in the freezer. The recipe is easy to scale up; the most laborious part will be shucking the oysters, but after that, you can roast and serve many at once. If the weather if fine, grill the oysters directly on the grates instead. If you can’t find spicy honey, use regular honey, and add a pinch of pepper flakes to the butter mix.
- 2 tablespoons salted butter
- 1 tablespoon bourbon
- 1 teaspoon hot honey
- 2 minced garlic clove
- 1 dozen oysters
- chopped parsley (garnish)
- lemon wedges (optional)
- bread (optional)
- Shuck and gently rinse each oysters, moving the opened oysters to a baking sheet as you work. Divide the butter between the oysters.
- Heat the oven to 475F/245C. Move the baking sheet into the hot oven, and roast for 6 minutes, or until the butter is gently bubbling, and the oysters are plump and pulling away from the sides. Serve right out of the oven, sprinkled with chopped parsley. Serve with lemon wedges, bread, and more butter.
Years ago, the Frenchman and I visited San Francisco. I was still new to oysters, but we drove out of the city, road hugging the cliffside, to Hog Island Oyster. There, on a brisk spring day similar to today, we ate a wheel of tripe creme cheese with sourdough, a carafe of minerally white wine, and a tray of roasted oysters. This recipe is inspired by the oysters we ate that day.