Roosters are an oyster bar standard made up of a single saltine topped with an oyster, horseradish, and several slices of jalapeño. The tradition: You shoot one back, grimace, chase it with a beer, and before you know it, you've eaten a dozen and got a T-shirt to prove it. This is not that. This tastes good. Instead of something you'd eat only after partying a bit, this version is an adept way to start a party.
Featured in: The First Lady of Carolina Cooking
Yield: makes 24 roosters
Time: 1 hours 35 minutes
- <sup>1</sup>⁄<sub>4</sub> cup minced pickled jalapeños
- <sup>1</sup>⁄<sub>4</sub> cup prepared horseradish
- 2 tbsp. ketchup
- 1 tbsp. mayonnaise
- 1 large jalapeño, sliced into 24 rounds
- Juice of 1 lemon
- 24 fried pork rinds, each about the size of a saltine cracker (2-inch squares)
- 24 shucked oysters (small ones work best)
- In a small bowl stir together the pickled jalapeños, horseradish, ketchup, and mayonnaise. Refrigerate for a minimum of 30 minutes before using and up to 3 days.
- An hour before you plan on serving the roosters, marinate the jalapeño slices in the lemon juice. Just before serving, stir 1 tablespoon of that lemon juice into the pickled jalapeño mixture.
- To serve, place an oyster on top of a pork rind and spoon a heaping teaspoon of the pickled jalapeño mixture on top. Crown with a slice of jalapeño. Serve these immediately because they get soggy very fast.
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