By David Harbilas
Mignonette is a classic French sauce served with raw oysters.
A little vinegar is mixed with minced shallots and ground pepper and simply spooned onto the oyster still in its shell.
Here, a very fine dice of roasted tomato and chiffonade of basil is added to the sauce to provide a sweetness to balance out the sour of the vinegar.
This basic tomato confit (see past posts for tomato confit tart) can be stored for a fairly long time, especially if the tomatoes are submerged in olive oil, and go well with pasta, on fish, or under the skin of a roast chicken.
For 10 oysters
- 10 oysters, scrubbed
- 1 red globe tomato
- 2 sprigs of thyme
- 2 cloves of garlic
- 1 shallot, minced
- Â¼ cup red wine vinegar
- 2 large basil leaves
- Fresh ground black pepper and salt to taste
- Olive oil
Preheat an oven to 300 degrees. Bring a pot of water to a boil and prepare an ice bath. Cut an X into the bottom of the tomato and submerge in the boiling water for 10-20 seconds, or until the skin begins to split along the length of the tomato. Immediately plunge the tomato into the ice bath for 1 minute. Peel the tomato with a pairing knife and cut into quarters lengthwise.
Cut out the center portion of the tomato wedges, yielding “filets” of the flesh. Lay the filets on a sheet pan, drizzle with a little olive oil and season with salt and pepper to taste. Lay the thyme and garlic cloves on the tomatoes and roast for 1- Â½ hours or until very soft. The tomato should still retain its shape. Remove and cool thoroughly. Finely dice the tomato and mix with the vinegar and shallot.
Lay the basil leaves on top of each other and roll into a cigar shaped tube. Cut across the tube, creating a chiffonade or ribbon cut of the basil. Add to the tomato mixture and season with fresh ground pepper. Shuck each of the oysters and top with 1 tablespoon of the mignonette mixture.