This recipe is exceptionally versatile. The nice thing about this is that it can be served chilled or warm as an appetizer or main course. When it is eaten as a main course, as is done here, we serve it with rice pilaf and seasonal vegetables.
4 cups thinly sliced red onion
1/2 cup white wine vinegar
1/3 cup sugar
7 teaspoons coarsely ground black pepper, divided
3 (12-ounce) containers standard oysters, undrained
1/2 cup fresh lime juice (about 4 limes)
1/2 cup Champagne
1 tablespoon olive oil
10 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 bay leaves
How to Make It
Combine the onion, vinegar, sugar, and 1 teaspoon pepper in a medium bowl; marinate in refrigerator 1 hour.
Drain the oysters in a colander over a bowl, reserving 1 cup oyster liquid. Combine reserved oyster liquid, juice, and Champagne in a large saucepan, and bring to a boil. Add oysters; reduce heat, and simmer 4 minutes or until the edges of oysters curl. Drain oysters in a colander over a bowl, reserving 1 cup cooking liquid.
Heat the oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add garlic; sauté for 1 minute. Add 1 cup reserved cooking liquid, 6 teaspoons pepper, salt, and bay leaves. Bring to a boil, and cook for 30 seconds. Remove from heat; cool. Combine oysters and cooking liquid; marinate in refrigerator 30 minutes. Drain oysters; serve over onion mixture.