Tuscan Egg Salad with Fried Oysters*
By Frank Stitt ó Highlands Bar & Grill, Bottega, Bottega Café, Birmingham, AL

Serves 4

Ingredients for the egg salad:
2 T extra virgin olive oil
1/4 lb. pancetta in one piece, unrolled and cut into lardons (1/4" x 3/4" strips)
1 shallot, finely chopped
8 fresh organic eggs
Maldon sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
Scant 4 C mixed young lettuces, such as frisée, arugula, young Bibb, romaine and Lolla Rossa
2-3 T sherry vinaigrette

Warm olive oil in a large sauté pan over medium heat. Add pancetta and cook for 2ñ3 minutes. Add shallot and cook for 1 minute.

Meanwhile, beat eggs and season with sea salt and pepper. Pour eggs into sautÈ pan and cook over medium-low heat, stirring for 2-3 minutes.

Combine lettuces in a large bowl and season with salt and pepper. Add vinaigrette and toss.
Add warm eggs to salad greens and toss lightly.

Ingredients for the sherry vinaigrette:
1/2 shallot, finely minced
2 T sherry vinegar
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
6 T extra virgin olive oil

Combine shallot, sherry vinegar and a pinch of salt and pepper in a small bowl and let macerate for 10 minutes.

Whisk in olive oil in a slow, steady stream. Taste and adjust the seasonings.

Ingredients for the oysters:
16 fresh oysters
1 C cornmeal
1 C all-purpose flour
Large pinch freshly ground black pepper
Small pinch cayenne pepper
3 C peanut oil for frying

In a large, deep sautÈ pan, heat peanut oil to 350 F.
In a mixing bowl, combine cornmeal, flour, salt, pepper and cayenne pepper and mix thoroughly to combine. Roll oysters, one at a time, in mixture and set aside.

Carefully place 8 oysters in 350∞ F oil and cook until golden, about 1ñ2 minutes. Remove and allow to drain on paper towel. Fry remaining oysters. Season oysters with salt and pepper.

To Serve:
Place oysters on and around the egg salad.

*Seafood Watch: recommends farmed oysters from all sources.


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