MY GRANDMA’S OYSTER PO BOY

The Po Boy is a submarine type sandwich coined and created in New Orleans by Benny and Clovis Martin; both were former streetcar conductors. According to the New Orleans Times-Picayune newspaper, there were approximately 1,800 striking streetcar drivers in 1929.  The Martin brothers gave the sandwiches to the striking men for free. The sandwiches they gave away consisted of scrapes of roast beef, fried potatoes, and gravy.   This sandwich sounds pretty tasty, especially if you are hungry and you can’t beat the price.

Today’s traditional Po Boy sandwiches are roast beef, oyster, ham and cheese, shrimp or pink oysters, softshell crab, catfish, hot sausage, and meatball.

This recipe is all about my Grandma Emma.  Rather than posting a picture of the sandwich, I am posing a picture of my Grandma whenever you have an Oyster Po-Boy think of her.

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OYSTER PO BOY

I will start by making my aioli:  1/4 cup mayonnaise, 2 tablespoons of fresh lemon juice, 2 teaspoons hot sauce, 2 teaspoon capers, 1 tablespoon minced garlic, 1 tablespoon whole-grain mustard, 2 teaspoons oyster liquor.  Dump everything in the food processor and pulse until smooth.  Refrigerate until you are ready to use. 

1-quart medium oysters, drained, 1/2 cup buttermilk, 2 tablespoons oyster liquor, 3 eggs, 3 cups self-rising cornmeal, 1/4 cup flour, 1 1/2 teaspoon granulated garlic, 2 1/4 teaspoons seasoning salt, 1 1/2 teaspoon black pepper, 1 tablespoon cayenne, 6 slices bacon, fried crisp, 1 French bread loaf,  3 firm tomatoes, sliced, 1 small red onion, thinly sliced, shredded iceberg lettuce, sliced bread and butter pickles, oil for frying.

In a medium bowl, beat the eggs, add the buttermilk and oyster liquor mix well and drop in the oysters and let stand for at least 10 minutes.   Get out another bowl, add the cornmeal, flour, garlic, cayenne, salt, and pepper, mix well. Take the oysters out of the egg wash one at a time.  Hold them in your hands, allow the excess to drip off.  Roll them into the cornmeal mixture until they are thoroughly coated.  Set them aside. Get out the heavy skillet, add enough oil to deep fry the oysters.  Heat oil to 400 degrees. Fry the oysters until they are golden brown on all sides.  This step takes about 3-4 minutes. Make sure not to overcrowd the skillet allow space between each oyster.  Remove from the skillet and drain on a paper towel.

Slice the bread in half lengthwise. With your hands, pick out most of the bread from one side; it will look like a boat. Toast this side of the bread to a toasty light brown.  Spread the aioli on both sides. On the boat, side add the fried oysters, bacon, lettuce, oysters, tomato slices, onions, pickles. My grandmother would frequently serve her sandwich with a side of sweet potato fries, sprinkle with nutmeg, salt, and sugar.

 

 

 

 

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