Baked Louisiana oysters topped with Tasso Ham, Parmesean Cheese and Italian breadcrumbs. Yields 2 dozen oysters.
2 oz unsalted butter
2 red peppers, minced
2 red onions, minced
1 jalapeño pepper, seeded and minced
2 1/2 lbs tasso, finely ground
2 tomatoes, peeled, seeded and finely diced
2 t fresh thyme, chopped
2 T white wine
1/2 c all-purpose flour
3/4 c oyster liquor
2 T heavy cream
1 oz parmesan cheese, grated
salt, black pepper & crushed cayenne pepper to taste
French breadcrumbs to cover each oyster
2 doz fresh Louisiana oysters on the half-shell
Melt the butter over high heat in a large sauté pan, being careful not to brown the butter. Add the red pepper, red onion and jalapeño, and sweat the vegetables until they soften. Add the tasso and sauté to heat thoroughly. Add the tomatoes and cook until they start to break down a bit, then stir in the thyme. Add the white wine, and stir to deglaze the pan. Add the flour and mix well to incorporate, then reduce the heat to medium and cook for about 5 minutes. Add the oyster liquor and cook for about 10 minutes. Add the cream and grated Parmesan cheese. Adjust the seasoning to taste with salt, black pepper and crushed cayenne pepper.
Remove the filling from the heat and allow to cool. Spoon the filling into a pastry bag fit with a medium star tip, and pipe onto fresh Louisiana Oysters on the Half-Shell (about 1/2 - 1 oz per oyster). Top the oysters with breadcrumbs and roast in a 400° oven until the oysters start to bubble underneath the topping, and the breadcrumbs are toasted (about 12-14 minutes).
To serve: At Bourbon House, the Oysters Fonseca are served on a bed of rock salt mixed with dried chili peppers and black peppercorns in French roasting pans.