- 3 slices hickory-smoked or applewood-smoked bacon, cut crosswise into 1/2-inch-wide strips
- 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
- 4 garlic cloves, peeled
- 1 1/2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon coarse kosher salt
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- Rock salt
- 24 freshly shucked oysters, on the half shell
- Prepare butter compound at least 2 hours ahead of time to give it time to firm.
- Cook bacon in heavy medium skillet over medium heat until crisp. Using slotted spoon, transfer bacon to processor. Add butter, garlic, Italian parsley, cayenne pepper, black pepper, and 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt. Blend until smooth, occasionally scraping down sides of bowl. With machine running, gradually add fresh lemon juice and continue to process until blended.
- Place large sheet of waxed paper on work surface. Drop butter by heaping tablespoonfuls onto paper in long log. Using paper as aid, shape butter into 2-inch-diameter log. Wrap to enclose; chill butter until firm, at least 2 hours.
- Prepare barbecue (medium-high heat). Spread 1/2-inch-thick layer of rock salt on large rimmed baking sheet. Place baking sheet on grill rack and heat 20 minutes.
- Cut twenty-four 1/8- to 1/4-inch-thick rounds from cayenne-butter log. Transfer hot baking sheet from grill to heatproof surface. Nestle oysters in hot rock salt. Top each oyster with slice of cayenne butter.
- Return baking sheet with oysters to grill. Close grill and cook until butter melts and starts to brown, 6 to 8 minutes. Spoon shallow layer of additional rock salt onto each of 6 plates. Nestle 4 grilled oysters in salt on each plate and serve.
Photo and (Modified) Recipe Credit: Bon Appetit