I love oysters.
I love the pleasure of eating them. I love their succulent mouthfeel and their umami flavor.
I love the fact that they are considered a luxury item, which makes eating them feel decadent.
I love the fact that, despite their luxury reputation, they are often quite cheap. (You can get a tray of five for 238 yen at my local supermarket, meaning each one costs less than half a packet of M&Ms.)
I love that there are so many different ways to cook them – and also that you don’t have to cook them at all.
I love them for being the ultimate sustainable seafood. Because they are farmed, there’s no danger of depleting wild stocks. And while some kinds of aquaculture (salmon pens, for instance) pollute the surrounding water, oyster farming actually improves water quality and thus helps the environment.
I love the bizarre idea that oysters are “vegan meat.” There is an argument that since oysters have no brains or central nervous systems, they are no more sentient or capable of feeling pain than potatoes are. Thus, they should be considered vegetables for moral purposes.
I love how nutritious they are. According to the website of Men’s Health magazine, a 3-ounce (85-gram) oyster provides 344 percent of the U.S. recommended daily allowance of vitamin B12, plus 256 percent of the RDA for zinc, 94 percent for selenium and 61 percent for copper, along with significant amounts of other nutrients.
I love oysters so much that I decided to eat at least 100 of them this winter.
Photos of a few of them illustrate this post. But so far, I’m only up to 48, which means I need to try a little harder.