Oysters Rockefeller

Born in New Orleans, this hot oyster dish has been a firm favourite since 1899

How to shuck an oyster:

  1. To open an oyster, first fold a tea towel into your left hand. Place the oyster into the towel with the hinge facing towards you. With an oyster knife or any short bladed knife with a strong blade, insert the tip of the blade in to the hinge. By moving the blade side to side the hinge will break open.
  2. HOLD THE KNIFE BY THE TIP OF THE BLADE AND NOT BY ITS HANDLE, this will ensure that you will not cut yourself should the knife slip. Remove the oyster from its shell, wash in salted water and return it to the shell.Oysters should be opened immediately before serving. Discard any that are not tightly closed.


  1. To make the Rockefeller topping, melt the butter in a large frying pan and add the celery, chopped spring onions and parsley. Saute for 5 minutes, then add the Worcestershire and Tabasco sauce. Reduce to a low heat and cook for 7 to 10 minutes.
  2. Add the Pernod or Anisette and bread crumbs; cook for 5 minutes more. Remove the pan from the heat and transfer the mixture to a bowl to cool. Chill in the fridge until cold but not set solid.
  3. Next, shuck the oysters as detailed above and discard the top shells, then scrub and dry the bottom shells.
  4. Rinse the oyster meats and drain. Arrange the shells in baking pans lined with a 1 inch layer of rock salt. It is always helpful to have sufficient pans available for the number of oysters you will be cooking.
  5. Place one oyster in each shell and heat oven to 375 degrees C.
  6. Remove the chilled Rockefeller topping from the fridge and beat with an electric mixer to evenly distribute the butter and infuse air into the mixture; transfer the mixture to a pastry bag fitted with a large plain tip.
  7. Pipe a tablespoon of the mixture onto each oyster, then bake in the preheated oven for 5 to 8 minutes.
  8. Allow about 6 oysters per person. Ideally, bake them in batches of 6 in oven proof pans, so each guest be served straight from the oven, avoiding the need to place them in serving dishes.

Author The Cornish Fishmonger


  • Author: The Cornish Fishmonger
  • Prep time:
  • Cook time:
  • Total time:
  • Serves: 6


  • 2 dozen oysters in their shells
  • stalk celery, finely chopped
  • bunches spring onions, finely chopped
  • bunch parsley, fine chopped
  • tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • /2 to 1 teaspoon Tabasco sauce
  • /2 cup Pernod, Anisette
  • cup seasoned bread crumbs
  • Rock salt