Oysters and Marinade
Tomato and Cucumber Relish
Peel and remove the rind, and cut into julienne. In a heavy saucepan, bring the oil to a simmer. Add the julienne lemon rind and simmer for about 7 to 10 minutes. Remove from heat and allow the oil to infuse for one hour.
Place in an airtight container and refrigerate overnight. The next day, strain through fine sieve or cheesecloth.
Open the oysters in the half-shell. In a non-reactive dish, place the whole oysters in a single layer, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until ready to prepare. Discard the top shells and rinse and save the bottoms.
Heat 1/3 cup of the oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the shallots and fennel; cook until softened, approximately two minutes. Stir in the remaining oil plus vinegar, salt and pepper. Bring to a simmer and pour over the raw oysters, spreading the shallots and fennel evenly over the top. Let cool, then cover and refrigerate for four hours.
In a small bowl combine the cucumber, tomato, vinegar, Mirin, sugar, lemon zest and salt and pepper to taste. Allow to marinate for three hours. Just before serving, remove oysters from the marinade and place each oyster in one of the reserved shells.
Arrange 4 to 6 oysters on each serving plate. Place a little crushed ice or rock salt underneath to stop the shells from sliding. Spoon a little of each mixture into different oysters to make an assortment on each plate. Garnish tomato and cucumber relish oysters with cilantro leaves.