Like fried clams, I love fried oysters. Like fried clams, I rarely eat them. I do find them usually too heavy for an entire meal, but they make a great appetizer (and they are awefully good on a salad too, really!).
I have probably enormously enjoyed every fried oyster I've ever had. Do not listen to "alleged" purists who insist that oysters should only be eaten raw. There are lots of great ways mto enjoy oysters, and while I most commonly have them raw, I do not ascribe to ridiculous self limiting shellfish beliefs and neither should you!
When I decided to deep fry oysters at home one day, I was shocked at how easy it was! No special equipment is required. No deep fryer. Just vegetable oil (soy, safflower, corn, etc.) heated in a pot on the stove.
You can shuck your own oysters, or buy fresh oysters pre-shucked in many places as I do. Of course if you live in Nebraska or The Central African Republic you may need to order them and have them shipped!
I've been serving them on a small bed of lettuce with tartar sauce. Here are my favorite two recipes, and I go back and forth over which I prefer. You can make them both at once and serve "Oysters Fried Two Ways" as I have been.
Take a dozen oysters
Beat one egg. Dip oysters in egg. Dredge in flour (with a little pepper and salt added to the flour optionally) and then place them on a platter not touching each other to dry for a few minutes.
Heat the oil. If you are measuring temperature you want about 375 degrees Farenheit. I never measure the temp of the oil myself, you just want it very hot!
Cover oysters in flour again, and deep fry 2-3 minutes or until golden brown. I usually fry about 5 at a time - depends on the size of the pot you have your oil in. Place them on paper towels to drain.
Eat with tartar sauce or your other favorite sauce or plain.
This recipe is essentially the same as the first with one additional step.
After dredging the oysters in flour and placing "them on a platter not touching each other to dry for a few minutes," dip them back into the beaten egg, dredge them in cornmeal, and place them back on a platter not touching to dry again for a few minutes.
As above, fry in oil for 2-3 minutes until golden brown and serve similarly.