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Making a foil nest

Updated: Mar 15

The cupped shell of oysters are natural ramekin-like containers for recipes that you can bake. But this cupped form wants to tip and spill the oyster, the liquor and everything else you are planning to do. There are specialty cooking trays and racks you can purchase we feature here, but these have their limits and are not applicable for every cooked oyster adventure.

Making a foil nest is extremely effective. You can make a nest in a baking or roasting pan, cookie sheet or recyclable aluminum foil pan (pan + lid option - see below), as pictured throughout this post.

Step 1: Depending on how many oysters you plan to cook you might need a few pans prepared. We typically can fit between 20 and 24 oysters into a standard 13 X 21 aluminum pan. So, you can produce between 4-6 servings per tray (estimating 4-6 oysters per person).

Step 2: Prepare sections of aluminum foil sheets larger than your pan. If you have the standard kitchen width foil, you will need two sheets per tray because after you crumple, they will not fill the entire base of the pan.

Step 3: Place hand on the foil and draw your fingers in slightly as if you were going to make a fist. Move your hands around and keep repeating until you have a fully crumpled section. Repeat as needed with other sheets. Use your nearby pan as a visual guide to size your crumpled sheets to fit the pan bottom.

Step 4: Cover base of the pan with the nest. Done!

As you place your oysters on this nest, give them an level press into the foil. The foil will cradle the oyster and hold it rather securely. Load the tray making the most of the space playing a type of oyster jigsaw.

One the pan is full, you are ready to cook and/or dress the oyster. If preparing multiple trays for a multi-pan bake, consider getting the heavy duty aluminum tops that fit these trays. Once you have dressed your oysters, secure the top. You can then stack them in your refrigerator until you are ready for them.

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