I've got the best Father's Day gift idea!
- It doesn't involve neck ties or golf shirts.
- There will be no trips to Lowe's or Home Depot (you're welcome, ladies).
- You get to enjoy it too.
Now that we live in Southern California instead of New England, we really miss fresh Maine lobsters. A couple of months ago, I wanted to make risotto with Maine lobster instead of with smaller spiny lobsters (which are plentiful here on the West Coast). Not only did I have trouble finding fresh Maine lobsters here, but when I did, they were prohibitively priced -- about $50/pound. Thankfully, Sagamore has made it cheaper to buy live lobsters and have them shipped 3,000 miles than to buy them in a store here (these live lobsters were courtesy of them).
Though lobster is often best enjoyed simply boiled, there is something sumptuous about a creamy lobster risotto. That's because chewy Arborio rice is cooked to perfection in flavorful broth, dry white wine, and savory San Marzano tomatoes. Silky butter and aromatic fresh parsley only enhance the flavor of the succulent lobster meat. Dad won't soon forget this dinner.
The only thing left to buy now is a Father's Day card. Unfortunately, I didn't see any on Sagamore's web site. Maybe they can work on that.
Makes 2 main or 4 side servings.
Print recipe only here.
1 (1 1/4 pound) live lobster
2 teaspoons olive oil
2 teaspoons butter
1 finely diced large shallot
3/4 cup Arborio rice (risotto)**
4-5 cups low-sodium broth, or as much as needed
1/2 cup dry white wine
1 (14-oz) can diced tomatoes with juices, preferably San Marzano tomatoes
2-3 tablespoons finely chopped fresh Italian parsley
1 tablespoon butter, not optional
Salt and pepper, to taste
Good extra virgin olive oil, for drizzling
Heat broth in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Once it's hot, lower to a simmer.
Bring a large pot (big enough to submerge the lobster completely) of salted water to a boil. To kill the lobster, hold a butcher knife over its head, about an inch behind its eyes; puncture and slice forward in one motion. Plunge the lobster head first into the boiling water for 7-8 minutes. The shell should be bright red, though the meat will finish cooking in the risotto. Remove the lobster from the pot, rinse, and allow to cool.
To remove the meat, twist off the claws; crack them open with nut crackers, and extract the meat. Bend the lobster's body back from the tail until it cracks; remove it. Then push the tail meat out. Crack the lobster body open and break off the legs; use a skewer to push the meat out of the legs.
For the risotto, saute the shallots in olive oil and butter. Add the Arborio rice; toast for 1 minute. Cook the risotto at a slow simmer, adding heated broth ½ cupful at a time. Most cookbooks will tell to stir continuously; I don’t, and you don't have to either. You can stir occasionally; just make sure the risotto absorbs the liquid before adding more. It will become tender and creamy as it cooks. Season will some salt about halfway through so it blends well, and add the white wine. Add the tomatoes with their juices. 4-5 cups of broth works for this recipe, but use more or less as needed. I prefer a soupier risotto for this recipe since it makes the lobster that much more tender. Add the lobster meat to the risotto, and cook 4-5 minutes.
It takes about 20 minutes total for the risotto to become completely cooked. Taste it -- it should be wonderfully creamy and thick. It’s best al dente, which means it should still retain some firmness when you chew it. Season with salt and pepper. Remove risotto from heat, and add 1 tablespoon butter for added creaminess. Add fresh parsley, and stir well.
**I used 3/4 cup of Arborio instead of 1/2 cup as I would normally do since I used both tomatoes and more wine. Plus, I wanted more risotto to balance the rich lobster. If you choose to use less risotto, then just reduce the amount of liquid you use.
Here are more delicious Father's Day dinner ideas:
Grilled Lobster (there's a video!)
Baby Artichoke and Asparagus Risotto
Pasta Shells in Creamy Saffron Sauce with Shrimp and Fresh Peas
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