In the heart of downtown Melbourne is a little restaurant called Stella. It serves dishes like this one that are big on flavor.
12 oysters on the half shell, drained
2 tablespoons rice vinegar
2 tablespoons mirin (sweet rice wine)
12 small cilantro sprigs
2 tablespoons thinly sliced peeled fresh ginger
1 small fresh red chile, halved lengthwise, seeded, and cut into 12 thin strips
1/4 teaspoon Szechwan peppercorns, crushed
How to Make It
Arrange 6 oysters on the half shell in a vegetable steamer. Combine vinegar and mirin in a small bowl, and stir well. Drizzle 1 teaspoon vinegar mixture over each oyster; top each with 1 cilantro sprig, 1 slice of ginger, and 1 strip of chile. Sprinkle half of crushed peppercorns over oysters. Steam, covered, 2 minutes or until edges of oysters curl. Repeat procedure with remaining oysters, vinegar mixture, cilantro, ginger, chile, and peppercorns. Serve warm.