Oysters lead to digging up old favourite films. Like Vatel, by Roland Joffé. A wonderful gastronomically seductive film.

But before taking up your place under the blanket… clean some oysters and make a vinaigrette and chill a bottle of white wine in the fridge. Or better yet, in the spirit of Vatel, let’s make it a sparkling one.


  • Open the oysters about an hour before eating, because they form some liquid whilst standing. Throw off the first quantity of liquid jsut after opening and leave the secoind forming of water if you like it. Or throw it off as well.
  • Use the liquids for cooking in the case of cooked oysters.
  • Serve on a bed of rough salt orcruched ice to keep them in place and the cruched icve will keep them cold too.
  • Always serve with extra lemon slices.
  • When eating raw oysters, choose the smaller size and the big sizes for cooked/baked oysters. the smaller the number, the bigger the oyster. The favourites size for eating raw, are 5, 4 and 3. Use 2, 1 and 0 for cooked oysters.
  • don’t forget to serve a warmed wet napkin when serving any kind of seafood. I usually fold a wet, warm napkin into a small square, insert a lemon slice and cover it in foil to keep the warmth insied a little longer – place on the side in a small glassbowl.

In spring and summer, time doesn’t allow watching movies. Life is to be lived ouitside, drinking up the sun during the day and the moon and stars by night. On the rainy days you can do  a little vacuming…

Winter, and especially January after the festive season,  is  time for nesting. Reading in front of the fire. Catching up on a new movie and then on those old ones you so love.

Vatel. Or Babette’s feast. Or how about Like water for chocolate, Or Woman on top … Mostly Martha(Bella Martha), or the recent c0py of it,  No reservations

For those living in the hemisphere where summer is at its peak now, well…keep on enjoying the sun and summer evenings the way you do and remember this for when the cold starts chasing you inside…

Vatel is one of those movies where the beauty  lies in the scenes behind the scene…the kitchen and the grounds of the chateau de Chantilly de prince de Condé , where Gerard Depardieu is the Maitre d’hôtel, FrancoisVatel, responsible for the entertaining and gastronomic pleasures of the le roi Louis XIV and his entire shallow entourage.The preparation of the exquisite foods is a feast on its own. The creations for  entertainment. The movie itself is total splendour at the chateau with all its indulgence and frivolity that would disgust, were it not a movie. Although, truth it is, or was…thankfully, now we can only find it entertaining and amusing and a pleasure for the eye…


…chocolat chaud…

…une poire cristallisée…

…canard roti…

…fruits cristallisées…

…fleurs cristallisées…


…Louis XIV lui mème…

…plat de fruits de mer…

Trucs et astuces de nos grand-méres:

Don’t throw out the water you have boiled your eggs in. It is rich in mineral saltsd. Use it to water your green leaf plants.

11 thoughts on “Oysters with a pomegranate vinaigrette and Vatel.

  1. The pomegranate seeds are so pretty with the oysters, and it sounds delicious! I’m going to have to watch Vatel now. Thanks for the suggestion!


  2. This movie (loved Babette’s Feast and Like Water for Chococate) and pomegranate oysters are a MUST … my husband just said so looking over my shoulder at your post 🙂 Thanks for the tip on mineral egg water … I never, ever thought of that! Wishing you a wonderful New Year!


  3. I want to watch Vatel again w/ a different eye!! I love the actors..

    I have never made oysters Ronelle.. but your bejeweled ones..look so beautiful..I think that’s what oysters always needed to lure me at last.. a splash of rubies~


  4. Those oysters look positively decadent! Might see if The Man thinks the same (sadly, oysters do not like me:-( )

    A further eggshell tip…save the shells and then toss them into boiling water for a few minutes for the same result/purpose. And the crushed shells make a good bottom layer in plant pots.


  5. I have never had oysters, but yours look beautiful with those tiny pomegranate seeds! I must watch that film soon again, thanks for remembering! Have a wonderful new year!


  6. Those oysters look just great …I’ll have some when the weather cools dowwn…..is there a french movie that Gerard Depardieu is not in…ha ha


  7. Fabulous, Ronell! I want to see that movie–I’m a huge Depardieu fan, so that alone would make me want to see it, but all that food. It does sound like a “Babette’s Feast” kind of experience. I’m ready! I’ve done that with egg water before, but I’d honestly forgotten about it–thanks for the reminder.


  8. Mmmmm. Oysters – Nick and I *adore* them! What amazes me is how hard it is to get fresh oysters cheaply here in London, but when we visit our friend’s holiday house in Gascony, there is a chap selling the most GORGEOUS fresh oysters from a stall in the Champion car park!! Go figure. Clearly we always indulge… 🙂 Never heard of this film (mea culpa) but it has Tim Roth and a lot of food in it – clearly my type of movie!! Will add it to my “must see” list.


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