Lobster leftovers. Akin to bacon leftovers. Or cheesecake.
As mentioned before (here and here), we like to cook more than we need for a meal. That’s the only way we have leftovers for rolls or sandwiches, and chowder. I believe I may need to try one of those delicious pasta recipes, as well.
On the menu today is Lobster Rolls. I may like lobster rolls more than hot lobsters, if I’m being honest. No fuss. No muss. Just pure lobster love.
These lobster rolls are ridiculously easy to make. There are lots of variations, but I like it simple and lightly dressed. The grilled garlic buns give a little extra oomph.
1 pound cooked lobster meat cut into bite sized chunks
⅓ cup mayonnaise
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
¼ cup finely chopped celery
1 tsp. minced fresh tarragon
freshly ground black pepper
Note: add salt if you need to, but my lobster was already salty
Mix in lobster. Traditionally served on split-top hot dog rolls (grilled with garlic butter is the best!), but also delicious on fresh [homemade] bread. This is one case where I recommend white bread. Ask my cl boy…that does not happen often!
Sorry…apparently we were too hungry to get a picture of our sandwiches…that seems to be a trend when lobster is involved.
Alas, the first lobster season is coming to an end. That means we need to grab some from the boat to avoid paying a premium at the lobster pound. For those who are unfamiliar with this term, the pound stores lobsters in large tanks for those wanting fresh not frozen seafood. You don’t actually get to adopt them, contrary to this misleading shingle:
Just teasing…this is actually a hatchery. You can adopt them. Well, not to take home as pets. Just to assist in covering costs to preserve stock. Apologies, a bit of a bunny trail there.
Hopefully, we’ll be able to snag some before the season closes and we’ll be boiling a few extra for the freezer. There are many theories of the best way to freeze lobster. Some people cook them, and freeze them whole in salted water. I found this at the Maine Lobster Marketing Collaborative:
How to Prepare and Freeze Whole In-shell Lobster:
Properly prepared whole or “in the shell” lobster has a good quality shelf-life of 9 to 12 months.
Lobsters should be chilled and live.
Blanch at 212° for 60 seconds in a 2% salt brine (1.5 ounces, or roughly 1/2 cup, of non-iodized salt or sea salt to 2 quarts of water).
Chill after blanching in cold running water or in a tub with a mixture of 50% water to 50% ice.
Following a 15-20 minute chill, remove excess surface water.
Place lobsters in commercial freezer bags and remove as much air as possible. New Ziploc vacuum bag systems available at supermarkets work well.
Place in second freezer bag or over-wrap with a laminated freezer wrap.
Freeze at -18° C (0° F) or lower — standard for freezer units.
Store frozen at -18° C (0° F) or lower. The lower the storage temperature, the better the lobster meat quality will be maintained.
How to Thaw and Prepare Frozen Whole Lobster:
Lobsters should be thawed overnight in the refrigerator.
Thawed lobsters should be boiled in a 2% salt brine for 12-15 minutes.
We’ve cracked them open and have frozen the meat in a little bit of salted water. It was very tasty, but quite salty. It seems that salt water is the key to having the proper texture when thawed, the trick must be in the quantity of salt. Tourism Prince Edward Island tells us:
Live lobster should never be frozen but cooked lobster freezes well. For best results, the cooked meat should be removed from the shell and placed in plastic containers, glass bottles or freezer bags. Prepare a brine solution of 1/4 cup (50 ml) salt to each quart (litre) of fresh water.
Apparently I’m not getting the full bounty from our lobsters. This article from the New York Times explains more. I guess I may have to up the ante and make lobster stock and lobster butter.
It’s all rather new to me, but I’m enjoying the benefits of trying these tricks!