At the last minute, I entered the Washington OysterFest contest. My aunt insisted I enter a main dish like she did so we could hopefully compete against each other! Truth is…I am terrified of winning because I will have to cook in front of everyone (WITH A MIC ON ME) while I cook!
OysterFest in WA is small time BIG deal. Not only are their oyster food booths, there are games, microbrews and plenty of competitions. The biggest X factor is the weather as sometimes the rain and mud can ruin the party for some. For others, the rain is just part of the oyster season.
Most of the people I know camp out close that weekend and enjoy oysters many ways among other things. My dad goes every year and has even competed in the cooking contest in the past (don’t talk to him about why he didn’t win or he will get aggressive).
I love me some fried oysters, but my taste tester doesn’t like oysters so I was on my own…FINE BY ME! I love oysters so much that when I was pregnant I often visited a drive through for deep fried oysters only! Mmmmm…still brings back memories! HEY…they are high in iron.
Another thing I love are chicken lettuce wraps. I figured I would Oyster Lettuce Wraps for this contest weeks ago because I thought the Asian flavors were different enough to set me apart from the fried Oysters everyone does.
Imagine this: sautéed chopped oysters, onions, garlic, water chestnuts in a hot chili sesame oil. Sauced with a soy sauce and brown sugar (among other ingredients) liquid and mixed with a whole wheat Cous Cous, this mix laid nicely on a bed of lettuce.
Rarely am I more impressed with result than the initial recipe. I usually play with the recipe quite a bit after cooking, but in this case I loved every bite. Since my taster was jaded, I brought a sample to the neighbor and he loved it enough to come back for more.