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Lobster Bisque

013So it’s a bit non- traditional, but we ate our lobster bisque accompanied by grilled turkey and cheese sandwiches.  Loving husband and I had a miscommunication and he ate my reserved lobster meat before I could add it to the bisque.  I can’t get upset, though, since that means A) he loved the prepared lobster and B) anyone willing to eat leftovers deserves a medal.  I’m absolutely thrilled with the results of my lobster bisque – especially since this was my first lobster cooking experience in the first place!  I’m very pleased with the overall color and taste.  I think it held its own with any lobster bisque I’ve ever purchased.

003For the technique, I reserved all of my lobster shells yesterday after Amelia removed the claw and tail meat.  For the head half, I chopped the lobsters in half and removed the sand sac or grain sac as it appears to be called both.  I couldn’t find a picture online of one, and silly me had my hands all slimy at the time, so I didn’t take one either.  I’ll give the description a shot, since I couldn’t find a good description online, and they call me the google-nator.  It looked like a relatively empty area, directly at the front of the head, up near the eyes.  Inside the sac, it looked like little teeny bits of broken up shell.  Here’s a picture of my stock after straining 3 times, I think the color is just beautiful.

004

When you watch the Barefoot Contessa on the Food Network, she thinks your fishmonger should have fresh, cooked, de-shelled lobster meat available for purchase.  I’m not sure that mine does, but I’ll put him to the test tomorrow.  If he doesn’t I’ll come up with something to add to our remaining bisque.

Lobster Bisque

(for stock)

1 tbsp olive oil

4 carrots, peeled and chopped

1/2 a white onion, sliced and quartered to slivers

5 stalks celery, chopped

4 lobster carcasses, chopped up and sand sac removed

2 tbsp tomato paste

1 14 oz can tomato puree

2 bay leafs

1 tsp dried thyme leaves

2 tsps kosher salt

4 cloves garlic, chopped

(for bisque)

1/2 c. butter

1/2 c. flour

8 c. lobster stock

1 and 1/2 tbsp corn starch

1/2 c. sherry

1 c. milk

1/2 tsp cayenne pepper

1/4 tsp fresh ground pepper

2 and 1/2 tsp kosher salt

parsley for garnish

In a large stock pot, warm olive oil over medium heat.  Add carrots, onions, and celery, sautee 10 minutes.  Add chopped lobster shells, then cover with water.  Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to a simmer for 30 minutes.  Add bay leaves, tomato paste, and puree.  Simmer another 30 minutes, then add garlic, thyme, and salt.  Simmer another hour.

Strain stock through a fine strainer to a clean pot.  Strain 2 more times.  Wash original stock pot, then melt butter.  Add flour and cook resulting roux on medium six minutes, stirring continuously.  Start by adding 1/2 c. lobster stock, then 1 cup increments until you’ve added 6 of the 8 cups.  During this process, your mixture will go from a paste-like consistency, to a thinner soup.  Use a whisk the whole time to ensure smoothness.  Add sherry and milk.  Combine corn starch with a ladle full of stock, then add the remaining lobster stock.  Add stock and cornstarch mixture.  Add cayenne, pepper, and salt, then bring to a boil and reduce heat cooking on medium low for 30 minutes.  Stir every five minutes or so – being sure to scrape the bottom to prevent scorching.  Taste, season to taste.

*** Here’s where I would have added finely chopped reserved lobster meat if we’d still had some on hand.

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