Broiled Oysters with Spinach and Brown Butter Hollandaise

Pungent shallots and vinegar cut the richness in these delightful appetizers
oysters, broiled oysters
Broiled oysters with Spinach and Brown Butter Hollandaise Michelle Heimerman

Instead of using clarified butter in his hollandaise, as is traditional, Global Village chef Martin Bealin browns butter, rendering it nutty in flavor. Choose briny—not creamy—oysters (ask your fishmonger), and be sure to make the mignonette: The salinity of the oysters in combination with the pungent shallots and vinegar are a welcome contrast to the richness of the hollandaise.


Makes 12

For the hollandaise and mignonette

6 tbsp. (3 oz.) unsalted butter, cubed
1 tbsp. white wine vinegar
1⁄4 tsp. kosher salt
2 large egg yolks
1⁄4 cup red wine vinegar
2 tbsp. minced shallot (from about 1⁄2 medium shallot)
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper

For the oysters

1 tbsp. unsalted butter (1⁄2 oz.)
2 cups baby spinach
12 medium-large oysters
2 tbsp. finely diced dried chorizo (1⁄2 oz.)


  1. Begin the brown butter hollandaise: In a small, heavy-bottomed saucepan over medium heat, add the butter. Cook, swirling the pan constantly, until the butter is golden brown and smells nutty, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a small bowl to cool slightly.

  2. Meanwhile, make the mignonette: In a small bowl, combine the red wine vinegar and shallot; season with a pinch of salt and pepper and set aside.

  3. In a blender, add the white wine vinegar, 1⁄4 teaspoon kosher salt, and the egg yolks. With the motor running, trickle in the brown butter very slowly, leaving behind the browned solids (discard the solids). Continue blending until all the butter has been added and the mixture is thickened and creamy. Transfer to a bowl, and whisk in up to 1 tablespoon of water as needed to thin hollandaise to the consistency of loosely whipped cream.

  4. Prepare the oysters: In a small skillet over medium-high heat, melt the butter. Once foaming, add the spinach and cook, stirring occasionally, until wilted, about 2 minutes. Remove and set aside.

  5. Preheat the broiler and line the bottom of a baking sheet with aluminum foil. Meanwhile, shuck the oysters, leaving the meat and juices in the bottom shell. Transfer to the prepared baking sheet, scrunching up the foil beneath the shells or tucking the top shells under the bottom shells as needed to keep them level. Top each oyster with some of the spinach leaves, a few pieces of diced chorizo, and a generous spoonful of hollandaise.

  6. Broil until the hollandaise is lightly browned, 2-3 minutes. Remove and serve immediately with the mignonette.

This recipe was originally featured on our sister site, Saveur, on March 13, 2017