If you are ready to take up cooking seriously, first of all, you need a set of reliable tools and you can find some suggestions here, in our recent post. Besides this, you also need to find passion and inspiration. The first comes with practice and for the second, you can always get help from others. That’s why we are here, as we want to tell you more about how to cook something that will wow your guests – lobster tails. Read on and find out more.
What are the benefits of eating lobster?
Lobster is a tasty type of crustacean that has gained an outstanding reputation for its qualities. It is typically associated with elegant restaurants and exquisite cuisine. This specialty is also pricier than other types of seafood. However, this wasn’t always the case.
Many decades ago, lobster was not food the rich would indulge in and it was usually reserved for servants and poor people. However, as cooking techniques evolved and people became more eager to expand the range of flavors and ingredients they could obtain from seafood, lobster began to draw more attention.
The biggest change in how this type of food was perceived came when chefs started to cook lobster live, which enhanced its taste. Nowadays, lobster is considered a delicacy and it is mainly prepared by boiling and steaming. You can eat lobster as a main course or serve it as a starter.
Lobster contains different essential nutrients that make it a good addition to a healthy and well-balanced diet. First of all, it is a good source of protein and not one that threatens your waistline or heart’s health. Like many other creatures that live in the sea, lobster contains omega-3 fatty acids.
These are the ‘healthy fats’ that lower the level of bad cholesterol, protect the heart, the brain, the skin, and generally, boost our overall health. Moreover, lobster also contains selenium, an element that can help regulate the activity of the thyroid gland that is responsible for regulating the metabolism.
Due to this mineral, lobster can also support the cognitive function, prevent thyroid problems, and it might even be able to offer protection against cancer, although more research on this topic is needed. Lobster is also believed to prevent anemia and mental problems such as depression.
Other essential elements you can benefit from by eating lobster are phosphorus, vitamin A, vitamin E, vitamin B12, calcium, iron, and zinc.
Lobster can be included in different dishes. You can get creative with this superfood and choose to add it to pasta, rice, or salads or use it in sandwiches and burgers. Due to its highly nutritious content, lobster is generally considered healthy.
However, it is not recommended for people who are allergic to crustaceans or those who have a sensitive stomach and typically don’t tolerate seafood very well. Moreover, since lobster lives in the sea, there is the risk of mercury contamination, a topic that’s highly debated nowadays.
For this reason, although its health benefits can exceed by far its potential risks, it might be better to eat this food in moderation. Indulging in an exquisite lobster meal once a week can be the ideal frequency.
Where can you get lobster tails?
Lobster can be cooked entirely, but it is also possible to buy and cook lobster tails. This option is more affordable than buying a whole lobster. Not surprisingly, many people who are passionate about seafood start experimenting with lobster by cooking the tails first.
You should be able to purchase lobster tails in any place that sells whole lobsters. You can get your supply from a fish market or supermarket and pay considerably less than you would for the entire creature. When purchasing lobster tails, don’t be surprised to see that they are not red, That color comes from cooking. The raw tails will have a greener or bluish color.
Generally, the tails that are sold separately are obtained from spiny lobsters that don’t have claws. You can find this product either fresh or frozen. If you plan on inviting friends or family for dinner to showcase your cooking skills, take into account that you should get one tail for each guest.
Lobster tails are divided into cold-water tails and warm-water tails. According to many chefs, the best option is to get cold-water lobster tails as they are cooked with more ease and have a better texture, despite costing a few dollars more than warm-water tails.
The first steps in preparing lobster tails
Lobster tails, just like other kinds of crustaceans, are a little bit more demanding in terms of preparation. You can’t simply take them, wash them and boil them, although that would be great. Don’t worry though, preparing lobster tails before cooking them is not a very complicated or time-consuming process.
It goes without saying that washing your hands thoroughly prior to handling the lobster is a step you shouldn’t skip.
Before you cook lobster tails, you should keep them in the refrigerator for at least 8 hours. This will make the meat less stiff and ready to cook. The preparation process starts with cutting the top shell of the tail, which represents its hard surface. Prior to cutting the tails, make sure you thoroughly wash them.
To cut it efficiently, you need to hold the lobster with one hand and use resistant kitchen shears. With the right tools, this shouldn’t be too difficult. You should cut right through the center of the shell’s length. Don’t cut the meat itself, just the outer layer.
The bottom shell should not be cut, so stop when you reach it. You shouldn’t divide the tail into two pieces, but merely make an incision so that you can spread or open it and expose the content. After you’ve cut the shell, make the incision wider so that you can separate the meat from the cover.
By exposing the meat, you will allow it to absorb the sauce you might want to add and also to get grilled faster. Alternatively, you can also choose to ‘butterfly’ the tail. This implies cutting the shell in order to divide the tail into two equal parts.
Boil lobster tails
To boil lobster tails, start by getting a pot that’s big enough for approximately six cups of water that should only fill it by three quarters. Add salt to the water and let it boil. After the water reached the boiling point, put the lobster in, and let it simmer for approximately 9-12 minutes.
The sign that indicates the lobster is ready is its color. As it boils, it should turn red. Apart from its color, the meat should also become softer, just like any other meat that boils.
Prepare a tasty grill
One of the best ways to enjoy the exquisite taste of lobster is by grilling it. To do this, after the lobster tails are cut or butterflied, you spread the two parts of the tail apart. Then, you should melt butter. Two tablespoons should be enough. Afterward, start greasing the grill and then heat it.
As the grill heats, brush the lobster with the butter. Put the lobster on the grill. The meat should be in direct contact with the grill and the shell should be facing up. Cover the lobster and let it grill for approximately 5-6 minutes. Then, turn it over and brush it with the remaining butter and let it grill for 6-7 minutes more.
Use the broiler to cook lobster
Another way to prepare this delicious delicacy is broiling. This is relatively easy, especially if you are used to cooking with this device. Before you prepare the lobster this way, you should turn the broiler on and allow it to warm. The average waiting time is around ten minutes.
During this time, you can proceed to season the lobster. There are four essential ingredients you should use to season the lobster tail: salt, pepper, paprika, and lemon juice. You can use approximately one tablespoon of each. This mixture of ingredients will enhance your lobster’s aroma, making you want to grab more than a fair share of what’s on the table.
Then, simply put the lobster on a baking sheet and into the broiler and let it broil for approximately ten minutes. The outer layer of the tail will be brown when the lobster is cooked.
Lobster tails are as tasty as the rest of this exquisite crustacean. Learning how to cook lobster tails is a good starting point if you want to be able to cook the whole lobster later.