The first time we made this lobster starter was for New Year’s, and it immediately became one of our lobster favorites. When Karen-Anne and I were planning our New Year’s dinner, as we always do weeks in advance, we’d already decided we were going to make something with lobster. Actually, we always make something with lobster when Karen-Anne visits. (When your friends voluntarily decide to cram themselves into a plane for eight hours just to visit you, they really deserve to be fed well!)
Lobster is so elegant, festive and somewhat extravagant, but one of the perks of living in the northern part of North America is that lobster is really quite reasonably priced. So why not take advantage of that? Well, that’s exactly what we thought!
Lobster on its own is amazing, so we wanted to add something really light and elegantly simple to our lobster starter. Something that would compliment the lobster without taking over. I’ve had a longstanding love relationship with sea asparagus, which has only become more pronounced as sea asparagus is so hard to come by. But thank you once again St. Lawrence Market for being the ultimate food pusher. It’s also almost poetic to pair lobster with sea asparagus, like staging a meeting between two long lost friends… And the pea purée just brings everything down to earth again, reminding us that we all need a little sweetness too.
Lobster with pea purée and sea asparagus (serves 4)
½ cup (100 ml) mayonnaise, preferably Hellman’s
½ lemon, zest only
1 tbsp of finely chopped cilantro
1 cup (250 ml) frozen green peas
1 ½ tbsp heavy cream
Salt and pepper to taste
2 precooked lobsters (if you can’t get freshly cooked, frozen will also do)
2 oz (50 g) butter
A small handful (about 50 g) sea asparagus
1 tbsp butter
1. Start by stirring together all the ingredients for the cilantro mayo in a small bowl. Then scoop the mayo into a piping bag. Set aside in the fridge for later use.
2. Pour the peas into a small saucepan and cover them with water. Heat the water till it boils and then strain away the boiling water. Now put the peas back in the saucepan and add the heavy cream and use a handheld blender to blend it into a smooth purée. Season with salt and pepper.
3. Melt the butter for the precooked lobster on low heat in a small pan. Next, carefully remove the lobster meat from its shell. Add the lobster meat to the pan and let the lobster simmer in the butter for no more than 2 minutes. Remove the lobster from the pan, but don’t throw away the butter.
4. Now add the sea asparagus to the pan and turn the heat up to medium heat for a couple of minutes. Don’t season with salt as the sea asparagus is very salty in itself once cooked.
5. Arrange all the ingredient on 4 plates as you see in the picture (or any other way you prefer). If you like, serve any surplus mayo and pea purée alongside the dish.
Did you like the cilantro mayo? It’s pretty addictive, isn’t it? Here’s another great way to serve it: