Jalapeno Caesar Dressing:
- 2 large egg yolks
- 4 cloves smoked garlic, minced
- 2 shallots, minced
- 4 anchovy fillets
- 2 tablespoons hot mustard
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- 2 teaspoons hot pepper sauce
- 2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
- 3/4 cup canola oil
- 3/4 cup olive oil
- 4 roasted and chopped red jalapenos
- 1 tablespoon chopped cilantro
- 2 tablespoons lime juice
- Salt, to taste
- 16 medium-large fresh oysters
- 2 cups dried cornbread crumbs
- 1 serrano chili, seeded and finely chopped
- 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
- 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/2 cup peanut oil
- 1 large head romaine, outer leaves removed, cleaned, dried, and diced
- 1/4 cup Cotija or Mexican Farmer's cheese, crumbled
- 1/4 cup pomegranate seeds
- 1/4 cup pumpkin seeds (pepitas), toasted and finely ground
To make dressing, combine egg yolks, garlic, shallots, anchovies, Worcestershire, Tabasco, and balsamic vinegar in a blender. Puree until smooth. Slowly add oils until dressing is emulsified and creamy. Add chopped jalapenos, cilantro, lime juice and salt to taste.
Shuck oysters and reserve juice (or have the fishmonger do this for you).
In a medium bowl, combine crumbs, serrano chili, garlic, cayenne pepper, and black pepper, mixing well.
Lift oysters out of juice, 1 at a time, and dredge in crumb mixture to coat heavily. Strain and reserve 1 tablespoon oyster liquor for vinaigrette. Place breaded oysters on waxed paper until ready to fry.
Heat oil in a large saute pan over medium heat. Carefully place oysters in pan, 1 at a time. Brown for 2 minutes, turn, and brown other side for about 2 minutes. Do not overcook. Remove and keep warm.
Toss romaine with Caesar Dressing. Place on 4 plates and sprinkle cheese and pomegranate seeds on salad. Dust plate with powdered pumpkin seeds. Place 4 fried oysters on each salad. Serve immediately.