A classic Australian dish which will be found in many Australian restaurants, and which is a brilliant way to enjoy oysters. I checked out a few sources before posting this recipe, for the 2005 Zaar World Tour, but primarily Huey (Australian chef Iain Hewitson) and the Australian publication by Reader's Digest of a book jam-packed with traditional Australian recipes: 'Family Recipe Scrapbook: tried and trusted recipes for today's cooks'. The recipe I've posted here is taken primarily from the Reader's Digest publication, but I've included details of a variation (from Huey) in the notes. By the way, if you're watching your salt intake and you're concerned about the unspecified amount of rock salt, don't be: you won't be eating it! Not in this recipe! But DO buy your oysters from someone or somewhere you can trust, so that you KNOW they are fresh.
- Preheat the grill to the highest temperature.
- Arrange the oysters on a bed of rock salt in a large, shallow, ovenproof dish.
- Combine the Worcestershire sauce and butter in a small saucepan and heat the butter until it melts and the mixture begins to bubble around the edges of the saucepan. Remove from the heat.
- Spoon a little of the Worcestershire sauce and butter mixture over each oyster, and top evenly with the diced bacon and season with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste.
- Cook under a preheated grill for 3-4 minutes, or until the bacon is crisp.
- Sprinkle with parsley, and serve with lemon wedges.
- Variation: The recipe for Oyster's Kilpatrick on Huey's website is Cath Claringbold's (from Mecca Bah in Melbourne), and varies from this more traditional recipe by including 100g finely chopped onion which is gently sautéed with the bacon in some olive oil. When the onions and bacon are removed from the stove, 2 drops of Tabasco sauce (this is for 3 dozen oysters) are added along with the Worcestershire sauce. Otherwise, the steps are much the same. I'm including this variation here, because unlike me some chefs I know are always looking for ways to add extra heat!