Thursday, May 24, 2012

Broiled Live Maine Lobster

This recipe seems rather bloodthirsty and cruel. At least the title does. Fear not, animal rights people. One does not actually broil them alive. However, I fear the lobster business would not pass muster with PETA. With most foods, nowadays, the cook does not actually have to slay the dinner before sticking it into the oven. Lobsters? No clean hands here. You got to kill 'em yourself.
Lobsters die rather dramatically. They arch their backs and all their little feelers wave at you. This time, I got my son to do it with an ice pick.
 We had the lobsters for my brother George's birthday on Saturday night. He said he liked lobster, and son and daughter-in-law had specifically requested more lobster. So, with six lobster recipes to get through, including lobster Thermidor and lobster soup, I went off to see if I could find a cheaper source of lobsters than the Fishery. My husband suggested the River Falls Market in Potomac.  I stop in Potomac every Saturday after my riding lesson, so it was no trouble to check this place out. While it had a stunning array of salads, fish, fancy meat  and lobsters, the lobsters were actually more expensive than the Fishery. When I heard they were $20 a pound and the fish man told me he had no small lobsters, I took a pass.
The Fishery's lobsters, when I investigated after lunch, were actually a bargain at $12.99 a pound. They did turn out to cost $95 but hey, who's counting? I toted them home and handed them to my husband to put in the refrigerator. (Lobster newbies, that's how you keep the things fresh. You just put them in the refrigerator, and they live quite happily until dinner time. You DON'T put them in a giant bucket of fresh water.)
My husband left them on the counter until I got home from the supermarket an hour later, but they were still alive at dinner time which is what  counts.              
We carried the table f rom the addition out to the terrace and set  it up.  It  looked very classy, like something out of a shelter rag. 
Unfortunately, the appetite for lobster was somewhat reduced among the guests. My son had gone to  brunch in the morning and                                                                                                                                                                                                           found it an exhausting experience. Daughter-in-law had gone to see her sister-in-law, laid up after knee surgery, and wasn't too interested in the lobster either. George seemed to like his, and I ate mine. I got more compliments on the rice than on the lobster.  I was somewhat privately outraged, since three weeks ago, he had requested  more lobster. 
One thing about broiling lobster. Don't put it too close to the flame. The shell turns black and brittle. Also, I'm not squeamish, but lobster guts are some thing I can do without.     

Broiled Live Maine Lobster

1  two-pound to two-and-one half pound lobster (this is kind of large) 
1/2 cup cracker crumbs
 salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste 
 1/4 cup melted butter                                                                                                           
1. Plunge a knife into the thorax or center of lobster betwee n the head and tail to kill the lo bster.   Cut the entire length of lobster  from between the eyes to the end of the tail. 
2.  Remove the tomalley or liver and mix with the cracker crumbs, salt, pepper and  butter. 3.Broil lob ster, shell side up, six  minutes. Turn, spreadw ith the cracker mixture and broil six minutes on flesh side.  One serving.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                

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