Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Butter Poached Lobster- Thai Mac & Cheese

'Lobster is like an angel without its wings, so I helped it out a bit...'

Blogs out there have been driving me nuts with your tasty sounding and good looking bowls of Mac & Cheese. Here I am at the mercy of some pretty horrible gluten-free pasta, and no time to make my own. As it dangles in my mind over the course of a week I suddenly become distracted with a few contest winnings in the mail...

The NFL Football Cookbook I got from Elain @ Kitchen Rap Elaine Giammetta and Lou Luzzo are co-founders of Gourmet Girl Magazine is full of 'Serious Fun Food', as I will borrow from my friend Greg @ Sippity Sup!!! When she told me I won an NFL cookbook I thought "Oh no, I am so not a sports fan"; only for my son and those friends whose team is winning! This book was written and sold for charity, and I am all about that...

Grazing through all the photos, history and recipes... I found Lobster Brie Mac & Cheese on page 156. The light bulb goes off! "Make my own version of this using quinoa". With my usual twist of course- Thai seasonings I have on hand, Havarti cheese that is mild and would meld into the warm quinoa, as well as some crispy prosciutto and red onion bits.

A most recent episode of 'Chopped' a contestant made a 'Butter Poached Lobster'. Once in Florida (yeah an Irish story coming) a friend and I went diving down behind her brothers house off a causeway, and pulled up fresh lobsters. Five of them! Then we set brick traps for future endeavors. I tried my hand at making bisque from the carcass and butter poaching the rest of the meat. The meal was a hit, and if you never have tried butter poaching; then go for it. Dropping those babies in boiling water is not the only way to go. Just chop off the tail and head, and get ready for the recipe...

Butter Poached Lobster over Thai Quinoa Mac & Cheese


Prepare two pieces of thick(er) cut Prosciutto San Danielle (my fav) in a sheet pan for the toaster oven or preheated oven- 350 degrees to crisp, but still just a small amount of softness; you cannot buy just two pieces, so eat the other half pound on a nice sandwich the next day.

4 Lobster tails, small or large, your choice; using scissors cut along the middle underside stopping just short of the tail. Using mallet gently hit the top side to loosen up the tail (shell) for removing the meat. Gently pull out the meat, and keeping it whole. I recommend buy a few more than needed, due to damaging a few trying to pull it out in one whole pieces. Taking a sharp knife and holding your hands firmly on top fillet the bottom from the tops, as you will chop up the bottoms for adding to the quinoa (cooked) just before serving.

Make a fish stock using the lobster tail shells (or a whole carcass); after removing meat saute shells in 1-2 tablespoons of oil, and adding 5 cups of water and reduce by half, adding another 1/2 cup water for recipe. Discard shells. Leave lobster meat out on plate so that it will come to room temperature for poaching.

Prepare 1 1/2 cups quinoa in 3 cups stock- do not over cook as per instructions or it will be mushy

1/4 cup rice wine vinegar


2 tablespoons EVO
2 tablespoons cilantro
2 tablespoons lemongrass
1/2 tablespoon chili past
2 cloves garlic, finely minced
salt/pepper to taste

Havarti- prepare six to eight 2 x 2 squares for presentation, and grate a 2/3 cups for adding to quinoa.

Red Onions- 1/4 to 1/2 small chop

Mixing seasonings, onions, cheese, rice wine vinegar in a bowl; gently toss in with quinoa, and set aside.

Butter poached lobster-

1 tbsp water
1/2 to 1/3 lb unsalted butter, cut into small chunks

In a saucepan, heat water until boiling and whisk in one or two chunks of butter to form an emulsion (called Beurre Monté). Reduce heat to low and continue to whisk in butter, one chunk at a time, until the Beurre Monté is about 1-inch high.

Use an instant-read thermometer to maintain the temperature of the Beurre Monté between 160F and 190F during cooking.

Add lobster pieces to Beurre Monté (in several batches if necessary), and cook for 5 or 6 minutes. If lobster pieces are not fully covered, use a spoon to gently turn over after 3 minutes.

Remove and place on plate near stove to keep warm until plating.

Garnish- top quinoa with cheese, lobster tails, and crumbled prosciutto

GOURMET GIRL: Elaine Giammetta and Lou Luzzo are co-founders of Gourmet Girl In March of 2008 they launched their monthly 'online lifestyle e-zine,' chronicling their ongoing culinary journey to learn, experience and share with their readers, all that is "Good Food, Good Wine & Good Living." The magazine offers celebrity and celebrity chef interviews, national and international restaurant profiles, recipes, cooking tips, wine, cheese & travel information.

Partners in life as well, they bring you their unique personal approach to the gourmet world. Along with a staff of four contributing chefs, all experts in their own fields (Executive Chef, Executive Pastry Chef, Master Chocolatier and a Fitness & Health Chef), they bring fresh, new and exciting culinary content to each month's issue.

Not to mention they hold contest over there often, so you should click on over there and check them out as often as you can!

'I gave hubby the camera and told him to go try his hand at taking a few photos to see just how challenging it can be. He did not do so bad, but he forgot the garnish in one shot, and too much on the next, but he can learn along with me!'