Lobster Roll at Great Lakes Culinary Center in
Southfield, Mich has its lobster meat mixed with
freshly made mayonnaise and some seasonings such as
celery salt or a sprinkling of celery seed.
out your big stockpot, fill it with water and have your
lobster-claw crackers ready.
there is no specific season for, say, Maine lobster, the
majority are caught May through November, when fishing
waters are warmer, according to the Maine Lobster Marketing
Collaborative. And, in Maine, August is lobster month.
rolls ó the popular summer shack food along the north
Atlantic coast ó are a delicious way to put all that
lobster to use.
they arenít just any rolls. What makes lobster rolls
special is the combination of their components: the roll (a
split-top bun is essential), the mayonnaise (homemade is
preferred), chopped celery and some celery leaves, and just
a bit of seasoning.
the lobster? Itís best freshly steamed or boiled.
before you get started on making a great-tasting lobster
roll, you need to know a few things.
you need to get the right roll, a New England-style hot dog
bun. Itís essentially a hot dog bun with the sides cut
off. Many grocery stores carry them ó we found them at a
local Meijer store. The sides of the bun are brushed with
butter and grilled, making them lightly toasted.
you need know how to cook the lobster (see our guides). Once
cooked, the lobster must be broken down. You need to take
apart the claws, knuckles and tail from the body to get
every morsel of meat. Use a nutcracker to crack the claws
and knuckles. For the tail, bend it to break it away from
the body. To prepare the lobster meat, cut it into decent
size chunks, not itty-bitty pieces.
are two types of lobster rolls: cold ones and warm ones.
Cold lobster rolls contain a mayo-based lobster salad. The
meat is mixed with freshly made mayonnaise and some
seasonings such as celery salt or a sprinkling of celery
seed on top. For crunch, add in some finely-diced inner
celery ribs along with their leaves.
warm lobster roll, hold the mayo and toss cooked lobster
pieces in melted butter and heap it into the roll. Thatís
it. You can drizzle it with more butter if you like.
lobster guide will help you make the most of this delicacy
of the seas.
FOR BUYING LOBSTERS
for lobsters that are active in the tank. If you see their
tails curled up, itís a good sign that they are fresh.
to cook them the day you buy them. Keep them in the
refrigerator and do not remove them until you are ready to
cook them. They will keep a day or so in the refrigerator
with a damp paper towel or damp newspaper on them.
in mind one lobster will yield about 25 percent meat. For
lobster rolls, figure cooking at least a 1-pound lobster for
is an ideal cooking method if you want to serve the whole
lobster. The meat releases from the shell more easily than
when steamed. But, it can yield less tender meat.
what to do:
large deep stockpot with water, allowing about 3 quarts of
water per 1 1/2 to 2 pounds of lobster. Add a generous
amount of sea or kosher salt to the water (at least 2
tablespoons per 3 quarts) and bring the water to a rolling
the live lobsters, head first, one at a time, and start
timing immediately, according to the chart below. Do not
cover. Stir the lobsters halfway through cooking.
times for lobster:
pound, 8 minutes
pounds, 9-10 minutes
pounds, 11-12 minutes
pounds, 12-13 minutes
pounds, 15 minutes
large pot, add a couple of inches of salted water.
the pot with a steamer basket if you have one. Or use a
collapsible vegetable steamer insert. If you have a small
metal colander you can place it upside down in the pot so
the lobster can rest on it.
the water to a boil. Add the live lobsters and cover the
pot. If your pot is big enough to cook several lobsters,
halfway through steaming, remove the lid, being mindful of
the hot steam, shift the lobsters around so they cook
evenly. Return to a boil and start timing.
times for lobster:
pound, 10 minutes
pounds, 12 minutes
pounds, 14 minutes
pounds, 16 minutes
pounds, 18 minutes
"The Summer Shack Cookbook: The Complete Guide to Shore
Food" by Jasper White (W.W. Norton & Company, $35)
GRILL LOBSTER TAILS
prefer buying and grilling only the tails because itís
easier. To grill them, stick a skewer under the shell and
through the meat on the top side. This prevents the tail
from curling during grilling. Brush the flesh side with oil
and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place the tails, flesh
side down, on a grilled preheated to medium for about 3
minutes. Turn them over and brush again with oil. Continue
grilling another 5 to 6 minutes or until the meat is opaque.
like to grill a whole lobster (or if you plan to store a
whole lobster for more than 2 days) itís best to parboil
how to parboil, and then grill lobster:
it, head first, into boiling water and boil for at least 5
minutes. Remove the lobster and place it in cold water to
stop the cooking.
the parboiled lobster in half down the middle. Remove the
dark vein from the tail, the tomalley (the soft green stuff)
and the sand sac near the head and discard.
the lobster with melted butter and place it, flesh side
down, on a grill preheated to medium heat. Grill about 5
minutes, turn over and baste again; cook for 5 minutes
longer or until cooked through.
and Super Fish Co., Royal Oak.
YOUR OWN MAYO
how to make your own mayonnaise. If youíre squeamish about
using raw egg yolk, be sure to use pasteurized eggs.
make sure all the mayonnaise ingredients are at room
temperature so the mixture can emulsify.
small bowl, whisk together 1 egg yolk, 2 teaspoons fresh
lemon juices, 1 teaspoon Dijon and 1/4 teaspoon sea salt.
While whisking constantly, slowly drizzle in 1/2 to 3/4 cup
canola oil until completely incorporated. Whisk in the lemon
zest. Taste and adjust, adding more lemon juice and salt if
needed. It should have at least a hint of lemon. Set aside.
NEW ENGLAND LOBSTER ROLLS
4 / Preparation time: 50 minutes
time: 1 hour
3 to 4
(1 1/4- to 1 1/2-pound) live lobsters
celery, diced small
cup celery leaves from the inner ribs, chopped (reserve some
whole leaves for garnish if you like)
cup mayonnaise or more if you like (homemade preferred, see
salt to taste
tablespoons unsalted butter, melted, plus more for drizzling
split-top hot dog rolls
teaspoon celery seed
for serving, optional
chips for serving, optional
lobsters in freezer while you bring the salted water to a
boil. Prepare a pot of water with a steamer basket and add a
couple of inches of salted water or bring a large, deep
stockpot of water to a boil and add a heaping 1/4 cup of
kosher salt. Working in batches if need be, steam the
lobsters 12 to 14 minutes or boil them 10 to 12 minutes or
until bright red. Use tongs to remove from the pot and let
cool completely. You can cook and refrigerate lobsters 1 day
and roughly chop lobster meat.
large bowl, combine the lobster meat, celery, celery leaves,
mayonnaise and season with salt to taste.
butter in a skillet on medium-high heat. Place the rolls,
cut side down in the skillet to toast. Turn over and toast
the other side. Remove the rolls and line with Bibb lettuce.
Fill with the lobster salad, drizzle with more melted butter
if desired and sprinkle with celery seed. Serve with pickles
from several recipes and tested by Susan Selasky for the
Free Press Test Kitchen. Nutrition information not