The flat oyster (ostrea edulis) is what we know locally as the Galician oyster. In its natural environment, it’s found attached to rocks or buried in the sand in the infralittoral zone up to 80 metres deep. However, oyster farming has been practised in many countries for many years. In Galicia, they’re cultivated in rafts in a similar way to mussels, and due to the quality of our waters, they’re a prized catch. Although various types of oyster can be found on the markets, the flat oyster is the best known.
It’s a bivalve mollusc that has two almost circular and unequal valves. The left one is concave and fixes the oyster to the substrate, while the right one is flatter and acts as a lid. The surface of the valves is rough, due to the various concentric grooves produced by growth. The external colouring goes from grey to shades of green or brown, tinged with varying amounts of violet.
The oyster is rich in omega-3 fatty acids and minerals (iron and zinc) that protect us from carcinogenic factors and strengthen our immune system.
Oysters are regarded as one of the finest seafoods, and it’s best to eat them fresh and raw, with or without lemon, accompanied by a good Albariño wine. However, they can also be prepared in other ways, such as battered in cornflour and fried or pickled.
The only difference between the various types of flat oyster we offer is their size: the larger the size, the higher the value.