Y’all know that finishing salt is everything! The sprinkle of a good Maldon or French Grey Sea Salt before taking a bite can take a great meal to extraordinary heights. Having a nice serving vessel for these prized salts is key. These DIY Oyster Shell Salt Cellars cost virtually nothing to make and will elevate your table in glorious ways. Not to mention that telling people you made them yourself will give you a ton of satisfaction. I like to get oysters to grill from Whole Foods, but you can also order oysters at your favorite restaurant and take the shells home with you. I recently ate some Oysters at Mario Batali’s Seafood Restaurant, Pesce, inside Eataly in NYC and the oyster shells were so perfect I had to take them home with me in my carry on bag. Yes I’m just that crazy! These are my Christmas gifts this year for my friends and neighbors but keep these on hand to give to friends and family as hostess gifts year round. I buy Maldon Sea Salt and put them in little containers to give with the salt cellars.Print
- Oyster Shells- your choice! I have been getting Blue Point Oysters from Whole Foods. I also just brought home some Annie’s Point (Massachusetts) from Eataly. See what you can find when you eat out! If you love Oysters here is your opportunity to try new types!
- Metallic Spray Paint (I used gold but silver, champagne and pearl would also look good)
- Food Safe Shellac
- Bleach Water (if you don’t have a dishwasher)
Take your oyster shells and run them through the dishwasher on the sanitary cycle. This should remove all the remaining crud. If you don’t have a dishwasher, soak them overnight in bleach water, heavy on the bleach.
Next, take out newspaper and cardboard outside and make yourself a spray paint station. Spray paint one side, repeat until you have a good coating. Next, flip over and spray the other side and let dry.
After the spray pain has dried (give this a few hours to dry outside), spray the inside part that will come in contact with salt with food safe shellac.
Voila- serve with your favorite salt on the table for a fun conversation piece!
You can take this a step further and make your own artisanal sea salt, the opportunities for creativity are limitless. Here are my recipes for Rosemary Lemon Sea Salt as well as Smoked Sea Salt. If you are interested in learning more about the world of Salt, check out my “Salt 101” article and impress your friends with some fun salt facts!