18 large oysters shell on, scrubbed, and rinsed
1 cup diced applewood bacon, sliced into lardons
4 minced shallots
4 cloves minced garlic
8 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 tablespoons all purpose flour
2 cups baby spinach
1/4 cup anise liquor, Sambuca or Pernod
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon Kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon fresh ground nutmeg
3/4 cup seasoned bread crumbs
1/2 cup grated parmesan
1/2 cup grated gruyere
2 cups rock salt, for serving only
Preheat the grill to medium-high heat.
Heat 4 tablespoons of butter with shallots, garlic, bacon, and salt in a large saute pan.
Saute until the shallots are translucent and the bacon is crispy, about 6 to 8 minutes.
Add the flour and mix together well to make a roux. Stirring frequently, cook the roux until it smells nutty, about 4 to 5 minutes.
Away from the burner deglaze the roux with the anise liquor, place the pan back on the burner being careful, as the anise liquor will flame up.
Add the heavy cream and stir to incorporate.
Bring the mixture to a boil then reduce to a simmer, about 5 to 7 minutes.
Stir in the baby spinach, black pepper, red pepper flakes, and nutmeg, and bring back to a boil.
Once at a boil, immediately reduce to a simmer, about 4 to 6 minutes.
Cook until the spinach has release its liquid, and spinach has softened.
Over medium heat cook the mixture down to a fondue like thickness, about 6 to 8 minutes.
Remove from the heat and reserve to the side.
Melt the remaining 4 tablespoons of butter in a small saute pan.
Once melted remove from the heat and incorporate the seasoned bread crumbs, reserve to the side.
Turn broiler on.
Take the oysters and place on the pre-heated to high grill, cook the oysters until the shell just “POPS” open, about 3 minutes, remove the oysters from the grill.
Take an oyster knife and pry open the top shell, scraping the oyster knife around the top of the shell to loosen the oyster from the shell. BE CAREFUL.
Once the top shell has been removed discard, with the oyster knife scrape the knife under the bottom of the oyster to remove from the bottom shell, leaving the oyster “on the half shell,” repeat this to the remaining 17 oysters.
Place the rock salt evenly onto a baking tray that fits 18 large oysters.
Evenly place the oysters, shell down, onto the rock salt, making sure to press the oyster shells into the salt.
Evenly spoon the baby spinach bacon fondue on top of the oysters, now take and evenly place the grated cheeses on top of the fondue.
Evenly sprinkle the buttered seasoned bread crumbs on top of the cheese.
Place the baking tray with the oysters into the preheated broiler and cook until the oysters are bubbly and the bread crumbs are toasted , about 4 to 5 minutes.
Remove from the broiler and place onto a cooling rack.
Serve the oysters immediately.
bacon recipe source: Guy Fieri, "Guy's Big Steakhouse," Guy's Big Bite, Season 17, Episode 12