All recipes are for 2 servings unless noted. Oil is canola oil and salt is kosher salt.


Kaki no misozuke / grilled miso-marinated oysters

Heavenly, buttery oysters. Great with wine!


Handful (5 medium-10 small) oysters
10 cm daikon radish (to clean oysters)
100 cc sake (to blanch oysters)
Pinch salt (to blanch oysters; not in photo)

For miso marinade
200 g Saikyo miso
1 tbsp sake
1/2 tbsp mirin

Lemon (for serving, not in photo)


Clean oysters with grated daikon, rinse, and drain. 


In a pot, put sake, pinch salt and oysters, and bring to boil.

Cook oysters on medium heat until plump, 1-2 minutes.
Shake the pot and flip oysters once or twice to prevent burning and ensure even cooking.
Remove from pot, and cool.


Meanwhile, mix all ingredients for miso marinade, put a thin layer in a container, and line with a cheesecloth.


When oysters are cool (room temperature or cooler), put on top of cheesecloth-lined miso mixture, cover with remaining cheesecloth, and completely cover with remaining miso mixture.

Marinate overnight.


Remove oysters from miso marinade, and grill until surface browns.
As the miso causes them to burn easily, adjust the heat accordingly.   

  • Oysters can be cleaned with potato starch instead of grated daikon radish.
  • Quickly blanching oysters with sake is to eliminate the raw smell and add a fragrant sake note.
  • Saikyo miso is sweet white miso. If it is not available, try another type of miso, keeping in mind that sweeter works better with the marinade for oysters, and more mirin or sugar can be added if necessary. Some miso, even if labeled as sweet, is much saltier than Saikyo miso, and marinating time should be adjusted accordingly. Experiment to find a good balance.
  • Because of lots of liquid comes out of oysters, miso marinade cannot be reused.
  • Use the freshest oysters you can find!  This dish is not recommended if the sell-by date on the jar is within 10 days. If your oysters are not very fresh, it is better to cook them with oil. Sauteing or grilling with olive oil or butter for extra richness should solve the problem.
  • Larger oysters taste richer than smaller ones.


Chieko said...

Best if you can find fresh ones in the shell. Just plop them in boiling water to kill them and they'll be a breeze to shuck!!!
Thanks for all your posts!!!

Chieko said...

I'm half-Japanese born near Tokyo. My mother (RIP) grew up during wartime Japan then came to the US with her Air Force husband. She was very creative in the kitchen and could "concoct" dishes magically based on what she had on hand. I think she learned to improvise during the war (she had to take care of her 2 little brothers because her mother had died) since she had to make-do with what was available.

Anyway, regarding non-reuse of the miso marinade, I agree to not use it again as a marinade but do heat it up and use it for soup! It's perfect for clam miso soup. The liquid from the oysters act like a dashi and the miso is already there! Voila! Miso soup. Add more miso if necessary and some wakame. In wartime Japan, nothing was ever wasted.

Depending on where the oysters come from, the smaller ones can be very delicious.

neco said...

Hi Chieko,
Thank you for the comments as well the suggestion on reusing miso in soup. Not wasting what we have is still important today.