April 16, 2015
Lobster rolls may be one of my all-time favorite foods – and I am very particular (and exact) in how a good lobster roll should be prepared and taste. I am a purest when it comes to lobster, preferring it grilled, broiled, boiled, or steamed, served with melted butter and fresh lemon. That’s it. Can I eat a lobster Newburg or lobster pot pie – of course – but nothing tastes as good as a fresh lobster tail cooked perfectly with drawn butter and lemon.
This is the way I feel about my lobster rolls as well. The quintessential lobster roll is served at Mable’s in Kennebunkport, Maine (www.MabelsLobster.com). This restaurant has been at the same seaside location since 1953 – and serves up great seafood…especially their lobster roll.
Fresh steamed or boiled Maine or cold water lobster (and yes, you can use Florida crawfish – good, but not as good), small amounts of mayo, fresh lemon juice, parsley, Kosher salt and fresh cracked pepper…and the one thing in addition to the lobster, that makes a lobster roll authentic is the bun. It must, that’s MUST be served in a butter (lots of butter) grilled crust-less New England lobster roll…not a hot dog bun, not a hoagie, not even a brioche roll – only one roll will do for me.
- 2 pound whole live Maine lobster (steamed or boiled, chopped into medium small bites)
- ¼ cup Hellmann’s (or Dukes) Mayonnaise
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped parsley
- 2 teaspoons fresh squeezed lemon juice
- Salt & fresh cracked pepper to taste
- 2 Crust-less New England Lobster Rolls
- Soft salted butter for outside of the rolls
- Boston Bibb lettuce (optional)
- Sliced Heirloom Tomato (optional)
- Bacon (optional – but not on mine thank you)
- Sliced Haas Avocado (optional – but not on mine thank you)
Steaming versus boiling??? Steaming a lobster provides great pure taste of the lobster for all the lobster juices remain in the lobster as opposed to being extracted into the boiling water. However, steaming is much more time consuming and convoluted…while the lobster will need to steam only about 5 minutes longer than the boiling method – you will need a larger pot, a rack, and some seaweed. So I recommend boiling your lobster.
Fill a large 4 quart pot with water, add ¼ cup kosher salt (you want the water to taste like the ocean from which it came), and a squeeze of one whole lemon…throwing in the entire lemon rind after the juice has been squeezed into the pot.
Let cool for 15 to 20 minutes. Crack shell, remove lobster meat, slice or cut into small chunks, add the ingredients and chill for at least 30 minutes. Butter the crust-less rolls and grill until golden brown. Stuff, yes stuff, the prepared lobster into the buttered grilled rolls – there is nothing worse than a lobster roll with little lobster…so stuff those rolls, and when you think there is enough, add more.
You will see a load of option items you can fill your lobster roll with – lettuce, tomato, bacon, avocado – admittedly, all are good, even great – but nothing beats the pure heavenly taste of lightly seasoned lobster stuffed inside a buttery grilled crust-less roll.