February Recipe of the Month: Angels on Horseback
This month the Mobile Oyster Company is featuring their “Isle Dauphine Oysters” as a shucked oysters. The same great size, flavor and purity, but you don’t have to shuck them. The work is done for you! We often hear from oyster aficionados that they don’t want to deal with deep frying with all the mess of heating the oil, breading the oysters and the cleanup. So, for the next couple of months we will be sharing some simple and savory ways to use our oysters. First up for this Valentine/Mardi Gras weekend……….. Angels on Horseback.
Angels on Horseback - This dish is well-known as an appetizer or as a main course. Culinary publications have yet to decide where the recipe came from, or the meaning of the name. It involves wrapping a shucked oyster with a piece of bacon and baking or broiling it in the oven or on the grill.
It first appeared in print around 1890, and some attribute the dish to the chef Urbain Dubois, who was chef to the German Emperor, Kaiser Wilhelm II around 1900. As a child of the ‘60’s I can remember when it was the rage. A member of President Kennedy’s diplomatic corps and his wife served it regularly at events they hosted in Washington. Whatever Jackie Kennedy was eating, the American public wanted. My mother often prepared it when entertaining.
1) Lay your oysters on a towel to dry or use a colander. Keep that juice for another dish!
2) Cut you bacon in half while still cold (it handles better)
3) Wrap each oyster with a piece of bacon and secure with a tooth pick
4) Lay on sheet pan lined with aluminum foil (easy clean up and reflects the heat)
5) Broil or bake. Your preference. Rack placement depends on your technique. Broil for 3-4 minutes. Bake at 400◦ or on a grill for 6-8 minutes. When the bacon is done, the oysters are done. Don’t burn the bacon!
6) For an appetizer serve as is. For a canape, remove the toothpick and serve on a bread round. As a main course, remove toothpick and serve over rice, couscous, quinoa or a bed of grilled vegetables.
My opinion of why the dish has the name? The oyster is the horse’s body. Then bacon wrap is girth and saddle blanket. The Angel? The savory 5th flavor or umami that come from melding the two components that each have their own complexity of flavor.
Any comments or suggestions? Leave them on our Facebook page. Enjoy.
Andrew Duke, D.V.M.
Director of Special Projects
Mobile Oyster Company