Fresh Amélie with Homemade Hazelnut-Basil Pesto

Fresh Amélie Oysters with Homemade Hazelnut-Basil Pesto, our recipe today!


12 fresh Amélie oysters

2 cups fresh basil leaves

½ cup hazelnuts, toasted

¾ cup extra virgin olive oil

Salt, to taste

Fresh basil flowers for garnish


Prepare the Pesto:  In a food processor, combine the fresh basil leaves and toasted hazelnuts. Pulse until coarsely chopped.  With the processor running, gradually add the olive oil in a steady stream, blending until the mixture becomes a smooth paste.  Season with salt to taste. Adjust the consistency if necessary by adding more olive oil. The pesto should be easily spoonable.  You can also do it by hand, like we did for this video.

  • Carefully shuck the oysters, keeping them in their half shells and retaining their natural liquor.
  • Arrange the shucked oysters on a serving platter lined with a bed of coarse salt or crushed ice.
  • Spoon a small amount of the hazelnut-basil pesto onto each oyster.
  • Gently place a few fresh basil flowers on top of each oyster for a beautiful and aromatic finish.
  • Serve Immediately:  Enjoy this dish immediately to experience the fresh brininess of the Amélie oysters paired with the rich, nutty flavor of the pesto. This dish pairs excellently with a crisp, dry white wine.
Chef’s Tips:
  • Toasting the hazelnuts enhances their flavor. Be sure to let them cool before using them in the pesto.
  • If the pesto is too thick, add a little more olive oil to achieve the desired consistency.
  • Fresh basil flowers not only add a lovely visual touch but also a subtle aromatic flavor.

This recipe offers a delightful fusion of the sea’s freshness and the earthy, rich flavors of the homemade pesto. The addition of hazelnuts provides a unique twist to the classic pesto, making this dish an elegant and memorable appetizer for your guests. Enjoy creating and sharing this culinary delight!