The City Magazine Since 1975

Smoked Oysters with Crème Fraîche & Saltines

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12 saltine crackers
1 Tbs. unsalted butter, melted
1/4 tsp. Old Bay seasoning
2 tsp. toasted whole coriander seeds
1/2 cup crème fraîche
1/4 tsp. lemon zest
1½ Tbs. hickory chips
1 dozen freshly shucked oysters on the half    shell
1 Tbs. finely chopped heart of celery, leaves included
2 tsp. minced shallots
1 tsp. finely chopped chives
1 Tbs. fresh lemon juice
1 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
Hot sauce to taste (find Lata’s recipe here)



Preheat the oven to 375°. Place the saltine crackers on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Brush both sides with melted butter and bake until golden brown, about five minutes. Remove from the oven and immediately sprinkle with the Old Bay seasoning. Let cool.

Grind the coriander seeds and combine them with the crème fraîche and lemon zest. Whisk gently to incorporate. Refrigerate.

 Place the hickory chips in a small pile in the center of the base of a stovetop smoker. Place a perforated pan on top of the wood chips. Place a wire rack on top of the perforated pan. Place the oysters still in their shells on the wire rack. Place the smoker, with the lid slightly open, on a burner set to medium heat. When the first sign of smoke rises, close the lid and smoke the oysters for 10 minutes.

Remove the oysters and shuck into a bowl. Add the celery, shallots, chives, lemon juice, and olive oil and mix gently. Serve with the saltines, crème fraîche, and hot sauce.