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Japanese Style Oyster Knives- Videos on usage
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  1. #1

    Japanese Style Oyster Knives- Videos on usage

    We carry these osyter knives- http://www.japaneseknifeimports.com/...fe-carbon.html - and people are always asking me what they are and how they work. The japanese style of opening oysters is very different from what we usually do here, so we went ahead and found some videos that show it well. Sadly, they are both in japanese, but i think they will make sense.

    The first one is a better explanation of the technique, while the second one actually shows the exact type of oyster knife in use...





    Hope this helps make sense of how these knives are intended to be used.

  2. #2
    My longest job in college was working shucking oysters at a restaurant in Venice not too far from your shop. I learned the standard American style where you pop the hinge and cut the foot. A bit later while spending time near Bordeaux, I was taught a different style by some locals where, as in the japanese style, you go in right at the foot and slice the connection which frees the whole oyster. In France, as in the US, there are a couple different main types of oysters, and this method, the Japanese one, works really well on flatter oysters, but it's nearly impossible to use them on deeply cupped ones only because of the way the shells connect differently at the foot. Basically, you need an oyster where there is a gap to exploit, and if there is, this way is way cleaner than what we think of the standard oyster shucking method. It's probably not as fast, but cleaner.

    I use this method, and probably will get one of these knives as I am in the market for a new oyster knife, with East Coast oysters, which are, of course, available everywhere in the US just like West Coast ones are, so the knife shouldn't be thought of only for Easterners, but it is more effective for their oysters.

    Sorry if this steps on any toes. I just thought I could put it in some context having shucked a few too many oysters in my life. In total, this is going to be very much like every other Japanese purpose built knife. The technique is based on placing something relatively delicate in just the right spot and the payoff is a very clean result. It is distinct from our basic way of doing the same thing which involves leverage and speed. There are significant payoffs to learning the technique.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Mucho Bocho's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mzer View Post
    The technique is based on placing something relatively delicate in just the right spot and the payoff is a very clean result. It is distinct from our basic way of doing the same thing which involves leverage and speed. There are significant payoffs to learning the technique.
    One thing you can give and still keep...is your word.

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    Senior Member stopbarking's Avatar
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    I'd love to see an English language video of this style and it's uses and merits. As someone with a lot of raw bar experience I'd love to learn a new method. I use each of my 3 oyster knives for different oysters and as is typical of users of this forum any justified excuse to add a 4th anything makes me feel better about a new purchase.

    From initial viewing it looks like this style would help immensely with Barcat oysters. These oysters are the bane of my raw bar existence and I'd love to see that this might be the way to tackle them.

  5. #5
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    i dunno, maybe i'm just pretty asian but that's how i've always known to shuck oysters, and we just use crappy throw away knives for shucking them. the western style is what i was taught in culinary school.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Brad Gibson's Avatar
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    I can see how this is only possible on the east coast oysters and I definitely dont think this technique would work on something like a paradise or a fanny bay oyster. But this video has opened my eyes to a much nicer looking shuck and I want to thank Jon for sharing it.

    cheers
    "A recipe has no soul. You as the cook must bring soul to the recipe." -Thomas Keller

  7. #7
    Thanks for sharing! All of my coworkers always order a big batch of seafood from this wholesaler we know during the winter. Last year my family got oysters and we couldn't open them for the life of us. Now I know/maybe I can do it myself. Emphasis on the maybe. LOL

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by stopbarking View Post
    I'd love to see an English language video of this style and it's uses and merits. As someone with a lot of raw bar experience I'd love to learn a new method. I use each of my 3 oyster knives for different oysters and as is typical of users of this forum any justified excuse to add a 4th anything makes me feel better about a new purchase.

    From initial viewing it looks like this style would help immensely with Barcat oysters. These oysters are the bane of my raw bar existence and I'd love to see that this might be the way to tackle them.
    I don't know Barcat oysters, but the technique isn't really hard. I'll try to explain:

    So, take an oyster and shuck it regularly. Basically, if you do it as I was taught, you stick an oyster knife in the hinge, pry it up then slid the knife up along the top edge of the shell so that you can cut the muscle off at the little foot. Now, look at the top shell. The connector is about two thirds of the way up on the right side. Now, take another oyster, preferably a pretty flat one. Go 2/3 of the way up on the right side and stick the oyster knife in between the top and bottom shells right at the little foot and do nothing but cut the connection. You can now lift the entire shell off of the oyster cleanly. The only issue is knowing exactly where to stick the knife in. You can actually see the spot from the outside if you look. Of course, this only works if the top shell is sitting on top of the bottom shell and not inside it as is common with a lot of west coast oysters. Just give it a shot.

    Edit: He is actually cutting the bottom connection, which just requires a different angle on the cut. Same concept, though.

  9. #9
    Senior Member stopbarking's Avatar
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    Think I got it. Now I have an excuse to order a few bags and throw a party to check it out. I'll try it on something easy to open. Maybe Rappahannocks.

  10. #10
    Senior Member Chefdog's Avatar
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    Did anyone else cry a little bit when he ran that beautiful oyster under the faucet???

    I will definitely try this method though, thanks for the videos Jon.

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