Tips for Cooking your Fresh Seafood From Lobster Lore


                   
 

            

You'll find your Lobster Day Goodies are quite delicious, nutritious and surprisingly easy to prepare. But before we talk preparation and cooking, just a reminder to Refrigerate your Lobster, Clams and Shrimp Immediately.

See Storing Seafood for proper storage of your lobster, clams and shrimp - both before and after cooking.  Here's Some Helpful Cooking Tips:

  • Steamed Lobster - Downeast, hardly anybody does it otherwise - Place about two (2) inches of water in a tightly covered steaming pot and bring to rolling boil. In Maine, we use sea water or if we're visiting friends inland, in 'bout a dollop's worth of salt. You might try 'bout half a tablespoon before starting to boil the water. Once you've got a real rolling boil and steam, put the lobsters upside down into the steamer and cover. (For those who prefer the lobster to be dead before cooking, plunge the tip of a sharp knife straight down right behind the lobster's eyes). Put them in one at a time, grasping just behind the claws - bigger lobsters on the bottom. Be sure you've got steam again before timing 11-13 minutes. Add 2-3 minutes for large lobsters. Stackin' up a bunch? Take out the ones on bottom a minute or so before the others. Times suggested above ought to work, but the real tests are below: Properly steamed lobsters will be a bright reddish orange - there may be some greenish brown spots. Surefire test: If the antennae and/or small legs twist/pull off easily, the lobster's ready to plunge into cold water to stop cooking. ***Beware of Overcooking***

  • A Sox Fan Favorite - Lobster steamed in beer. Follow directions above and add one ounce of your favorite beer for every one pound of lobster. Some like one pot with a light beer and one with a stronger brew.

  • Don't have a Steamer Pot? No problem - here's how to jury-rig one. Get a big pot - place a cake rack or wire rack with legs, or even a trivet on the bottom of pot about 1-1/3 inches off the bottom. Other ways - use a turkey roaster with an inset or a canner with a round cake cooler on top of jar rack. Finally folks in Newfoundland cook them this way: put a couple of inches of water on the bottom of a big pot. Bring to a rolling boil - the steam them for the times given above.

  • Boiling Lobsters - If you don't have a steamer, get one, because boiling dries out the meat. If you have to, here's how to boil: Pick up the lobster by gripping it just below the large front claws and plunge it headfirst into boiling water that has about one teaspoon of salt per quart of water. Cover. Reheat to the simmering point. Allow lobster to simmer five (5) minutes for the first pound, and one (1) minute for each quarter pound thereafter. When those exact times are up, immediately plunge the lobster into cold water to stop the cooking process.

  • Clam Calamities? Question: Clam shells need to be shut tight before soaking or they're no good? Untrue. Nearly all clam shells are partially open with a piece of connecting membrane between the two shells. This membrane is normal and is a function of the clam's growth. "Open" means that you can see the clam meat inside the clam shells; clams that are clearly open before soaking should be discarded. Question: Cracked clams shouldn't be steamed? Depends. If you can't see exposed clam meat through the crack, the clam is safe. Question: If a clam's neck is sticking way out rather limply, the clam shouldn't be steamed? Depends Here's the neck test: If you see extruded necks, gently tap the end of the neck. If it begins to recede, the clam is definitely alive.

  • Steamed Clams - Even though our clams have already been soaked, there may still be sand in them. The following treatment will help rid most of it. Soak only those clams you are about to steam in fresh water. The longer the better but thirty (30) minutes is the minimum and no longer than two (2) hours. Soaking overnight can cause the clams to lose their natural juices. Not always necessary but a couple of tablespoons of corn meal will help the clams spit out sand. Stir occasionally. Change water, and add corn meal if soaking for more than one hour. Rinse this group of clams and do the following: Put 1 to 1-1/2 inches of water on the bottom of the steamer. COVER TIGHTLY AND STEAM CLAMS FOR ABOUT 5 MINUTES OR UNTIL THEIR SHELLS OPEN. Should any clams fail to open, try steaming them for a minute or two longer, as the weight of the clams above may have prevented the shells of those on the bottom from opening. SHOULD THOSE CLAMS STILL NOT OPEN, DISCARD THEM, as they are no good and may make you sick if you eat them. Once the clams have opened, remove them, put the clam broth into cups, swish each clam in the broth (this should remove any traces of sand) and dip into melted butter. Mmm Good!

  • Cooking Shrimp - Everybody does it differently. We suggest steaming until they're a little pink - 2 to 3 minutes. Then plunge them into cold water to stop cooking.

  • Aroma - For those who do not like the smell of lobster cooking or the lingering odor afterwards, boil a mixture of half vinegar, half water in a small sauce pan for about 5-10 minutes while cooking your lobsters. It will rid the kitchen of the lobster smell.