Saturday, May 28, 2011

Rosie Makes a Lobster Bisque.

Lobsters are one of my favorite crustaceans to eat.
Notice I'm calling this a bisque. When I looked up the definition of bisque, I found this: "a thick cream soup, especially of puréed shellfish or vegetables."
I have a thick cream soup,
but I just can't bring myself to pureeing any shellfish. That goes against my grain. I like chunks of seafood.
Here are our lobsters going into their sauna.
Mr. Hawthorne put the little buggers into a full steam bath. Their sauna lasted about 12 minutes and now they're nice and pink.
Meet Kendall, Brooke, and Phoebe.
Mr. Hawthorne picks the meat out of the shell. Lobster ain't as bad as crab to pick, but it's still a bitch. I leave all the picking to Mr. Hawthorne. I'm not throwing out the shells because I want to extract as much lobster flavor as I can. First, I'm making a lobster stock.
I dumped the lobster shells into my pan with LOLUB and ELBOO.
Start cooking over medium high heat.
Mr. Hawthorne had picked crabs earlier, so I'm using the crab shells too.
I cooked the shells for about 20 minutes in the oil and butter, crushing the shells to release more flavor.
Keep crushing.
After about 20 minutes, I added in some bay leaves ...
... and 4 quarts of water to cover the shells.
Add in about a tablespoon of peppercorns.
Bring the broth to a bare simmer, then dial it back. You never want this to boil because boiling release impurities. Keep it on the low side of simmer for about 30 minutes.
Mr. Hawthorne bought the chinois for my birthday.
I strained the lobster and crab broth through the chinois.
Remove any oil on the surface.
Strain again through cheesecloth.
For my bisque, I'm using 2 potatoes, 2 stalks of celery, two carrots, 2 cloves of garlic, and 1 onion.
Dice all the veggies.
Generally, I would use bacon here, but didn't have any. What I did have was prosciutto and ham.
Dice the meats and add to the LOLUB and ELBOO.
When the ham and prosciutto is browned ...
... add in the taters ...
... onions, garlic, and carrots ...
... and celery.
Saute for a minute or two.
Pretty veggies.
Next, I added in 3 cups of water or enough to cover and simmered until the potatoes were tender.
While the veggies were simmering, I continued to get excess oil out of the lobster and crab stock.
Discard the excess.
When the potatoes were tender, I added in two tablespoons of tomato paste.
Add in 2-3 cups of lobster/crab stock.
Add in 2 cups heavy cream.
1/4 cup wine going in.
My bisque needed a bit of thickening, so I'm making a cornstarch slurry.
Mix 1/4 cup cornstarch with 1/4 cup white wine. Stir to dissolve and ...
... pour into bisque.
Here are my little pretties.
Chop the lovely lobsters and ...
... add to the pot. Heat through. Turn off heat and let the flavors marry.
I sprinkled a little fresh thyme and tarragon in my bisque. Are you wondering what the little brown things are? Anyone care to make a guess?*
I added a few pieces of shrimp for good measure. This was deliciously creamy, velvety, and rich - full of intense lobster and crab flavors. * The little brown thingies are Lobster Rangoons. Recipe coming up.


Marilyn said...

That looks divine.

Anonymous said...

Oh man, I want some right now for breakfast!

Rose II said...

Looks great! Did I miss the lobster rangoon demonstration?

Rosie Hawthorne said...

No. Rose II, you didn't. Thanks for reminding me.