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The Gift from Ocean
March 2015 / The Gift from Ocean
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It sometimes seems like there are new kinds of processed foods being launched every day, many of them undeniably inventive and delicious. Yet it's the simple and natural ingredients that are always the most unforgettable. That's the culinary magic of nature! ​

Oysters grow in clean ocean waters. Simply open the shell to reveal the fleshy meat – a true ocean treasure! Rather like red wine, an oyster's quality is determined by its place of origin, and each area is associated with a unique flavour. With its vast coastline, France is home to a rich variety of seafood. From September to March every year, it harvests a huge number of high quality oysters. Since wild-harvested oysters are only available for half the year, French producers have also carefully selected the top species for cultivation in oyster farms. Over the last 200 years, France's oyster output has grown to account for 90% of Europe's total oyster production. As any oyster lover will tell you, French oysters are très magnifique!

Renowned oyster farm Saint Kerber is located at Cancale, on the Brittany coast to the east of Saint-Malo and next to beautiful Mont Saint-Michel. Classified as a world heritage area by UNESCO, Cancale is also prized by oyster lovers around the globe for its delicious cultivated oysters. Saint Kerber Farm skilfully combines modern technology with traditional methods to produce plump, high quality oysters that are adored the world over. Join us on a photographic trip to the oyster farm!
The oysters are harvested when fully grown.
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The harvested oysters can't be eaten immediately. They must be purified in a seawater cultivation pool first. It takes about a week to remove the silt and other deposits inside the oysters.
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Oysters are categorized and packed in batches.
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Fresh oysters are sent off to the market, where a wide variety is available. Lemons are traditionally displayed on or next to the oyster baskets.
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city'super's seafood procurement specialist William explains how he selects the finest seafood, including the world's top oysters. He also offers handy tips on how to know whether an oyster is good or not, as well as expert advice on understanding and appreciating oysters.
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C :city'super        I:WILLIAM CHONG

C : What should I know when buying oysters? 
I : Oysters are living animals and need to be treated accordingly. Each oyster has its own characteristics: flavour, texture, size and shape. In order to satisfy almost every preference, city'super carries a variety of species from different areas. We offer 12 different species all year round. 

C : How can I identify a good quality oyster? 
I : It should feel heavy and be full of water. The meat should be white and fleshy. 
C : Where do you source most of your oysters? 
I : France, Australia, Japan and the US. 

C : Is there any way of telling if an oyster has gone bad? 
I : The shells of live oysters, clams and mussels should all be tightly closed or just very slightly open. If the shell is open, tap it lightly with your finger. If the shell closes, the animal is alive and safe to buy. If an oyster is open and still doesn't shut even when handled, it should be discarded. 

C : What factors influence your buying decisions? 
I : What's in season and what tastes best, as well as safety and freshness. In the northern hemisphere, fall, winter, and spring produce the best oysters, particularly for eating raw. Oysters spawn in the warmer summer months, usually May through August. Spawning makes them fatty, watery, soft, and less flavourful. By comparison, the oysters harvested in cooler, non-spawning months have the desired lean, firm texture and a bright seafood flavour. That's why, in spring and summer, we usually import from the cooler waters of the southern hemisphere. 
C : How should I store oysters? 
I : Oysters need to be stored in a cool, damp place, ideally at 4。C. You can also use the provided seaweed as a gauge: the seaweed should always feel damp. Never freeze the oysters or submerge them in water. 

C : What is your best recipe for oysters? 
I : To taste the real oyster - Raw. 
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Light soy sauce can further enhance the delicious flavour of oysters. The oysters' sweet freshness perfectly blends with the tasty and pure pearl rice.
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Frozen oysters
8 pcs
Japanese rice
1 cup
Spring onion
Radish sprouts
Bonito powder
1 tbsp
Bonito flakes
Shio koji
½ tbsp
½ tbsp
Japanese light soy sauce
a little
Steps for Japanese-style Oysters Steamed Rice:

1. Thaw the frozen oysters under running water for 2-3 minutes.
2. Once defrosted, marinate the oysters in Japanese light soy sauce for 30 minutes, then drain and put to one side.
3. Mix bonito powder, mirin, shio koji into the rice and then steam for 15 minutes.
4. 5 minutes before the rice is ready, put the marinated oysters on top to cook with the rice.
5. Sprinkle with onion, radish sprouts and bonito flakes for garnish.