Nervous and excited, that’s essentially how I felt about cooking lobster. We had a very Annie Hall moment in the kitchen, as much as I had no problems holding these glorious shellfish, there was no way I would plunge them in boiling water, so I asked my husband to do the job.
To celebrate last week’s Bastille day, we ordered lobsters from Brittany at our local fishmonger. They are renowned to be the best lobsters in Europe, so incredibly refined and succulent. I asked Daniel Blondel, our fisherman friend, how he liked to eat his lobsters, he replied: ‘Avec du beurre fondu, de l’estragon frais, du sel et poivre‘ – fresh tarragon, clarified butter, salt and pepper. I served it with a simple salad, vinaigrette and sliced radishes – nothing too overpowering as I mainly want to taste the lobster meat.
It was simply the best festive lunch I ever had in Médoc.
2 fresh lobsters
200 g unsalted butter
A large handful of chopped tarragon leaves
Salt (Fleur de sel de Guérande) and pepper for seasoning
In a saucepan, heat the unsalted butter on a low heat. Simmer until all the solids (foam) detach from the melted butter. Remove from heat and remove the foam/solids until you are left with the clear melted butter. You can also strain the butter through cotton muslin, cheesecloth, or a very refined colander. Once you have your clarified butter, re-heat for 2 minutes on a low heat, add salt, pepper and the large handful of freshly chopped tarragon leaves .
In a tall and large pot (tall enough for 2 lobsters), boil water with 2 bay leaves, 2 tbsp salt and 2 tsp thyme leaves. When the water brings to a boil, drop in the lobsters (head first) and wait till the water returns to a boil. From then on, cover and cook on a medium heat for 20 minutes. Drain lobsters and slice from the center. Serve on a large plate with a salad and the butter sauce on the side.