Having a plethora of excess lobster meat isn’t exactly a typical problem around our house (though I wish it were) but it has happened on occasion. Oddly, one of the most frequent questions I’ve heard about lobster is, “Can I freeze leftovers?”
We had this fantastic Spring salad with leftovers from Mothers Day. It was a bit of a modern spinoff of the mayo-soaked lobster salads I had as a kid (and still enjoy):
When leftovers taste this good you run the risk of making food just to create leftovers:
We’re returning to the lobster series for a few days with a few recipes that start with our lobster stock. You can see the entire lobster series here. If you don’t have seafood, we have another risotto recipe that you may want to check out here.
This was a great meal and an example of how easily you can extend lobster to make it much more affordable than many people think.
Lobster doesn’t have to be expensive when you use the whole animal..
At our most recent dinner party, most of the adults were stuffed with one 1.5 pound lobster. Since we’re out of season, the price was a little high at $9 per pound. If you purchased 1 lobster for each of the 8 people who attended, you would need 12 pounds of lobster ($108); or $13.50 per person which isn’t exactly cheap but is comparable to a some fast food dinners.
So far you’ve bought yourself some fresh lobster, risked certain injury (or not) removing their bands and cooked them. Now what? Now’s the fun part.
Before we begin, let’s get into a quick explanation of why I don’t eat them in restaurants and why the idea drives me a little mad.
This is part of a series on how to buy, cook, eat and make stock from lobster. Yesterday’s piece focused on how to purchase lobster and how to tell the gender; today we talk about the simple task of cooking it. This article assumes knowledge from the previous (the most important part being that we cook 1.25-1.5 pound lobsters with an absolute ceiling of 1.75 pounds) – the timing is based on the assumption that the previous page has been followed.
If there is one thing that you need to know about how to cook a lobster it’s that it’s simple. If there’s a second thing to know, it’s that each region, town and family has their own way that, according to them, is the ONLY way to cook a lobster. My family is no different.
To this day I don’t know exactly what he said although I do know what he meant. I had been confident for years the my Grandfather told me that “cold EATS cold.“ In retrospect, I have begun to question my young ears and wondering if his Acadian accent was saying “cold HEATS cold.”
It is 2,200 kilometers (about 1,400) miles from the front door of my childhood home to that of my Mothers place of birth. The drive is typically split over two days and is one I have done more times than I can count. I can remember doing it in pickup trucks, cars, a motorcycle, towing a tent trailer, a Transport filled with yogurt and even in a small car sitting in the middle seat for 24 hours straight.
We would drive across the country to visit family for a week (or several) before the long drive home. The return trip often involved transporting a bounty from the sea such as frozen clams, crab, shrimp or that sort of thing. If you have been reading Well Preserved lately you will know this tradition continued when we froze about 40 pounds of crab meat) and prepared to bring it home.
My parents were driving the long trek and took it in their car. We followed Pepés advice:
“Cold EATS cold.”
Look closely at the picture above – frozen crab, scallops and no ice. Each package is individually wrapped in newspaper to insulate one from the other. The final step is to put the lid on and tape it sealed.
The insulation is vital as, otherwise, the frozen bags of crag would draw cold from one another and promote early thawing. As one bag would begin to melt, it would attract cold from the one beside it to try to stay cold thus thawing it sooner.
The crab and scallops sat in the trunk of the car for almost 36 hours in August and arrived in Toronto with only the starting signs of a thaw. And icepack would promote melting.
Next time you find yourself needing to drive across country with a trunk full of frozen goodies, you have a plan! If you stay in hotels with restaurants, many will make room in their freezers for the entire package.