Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Too Much Lobster

Yeah, that's right. I said too much lobster. Maybe I should say almost too much lobster. Over a dozen to myself alone in one week. A real Maritime experience and I had to wait for my father in law to come down from Northern Ontario to fish before I could experience it.

So anyways, my father in law's a real fishing nut plus he thought he'd kill two birds with one stone and come see us at the same time as he went lobster fishing. Now fishing lobster isn't open to anyone. You need a license to even put your hands on a lobster cage. But the friendly fishermen don't mind if you got out with them on there boat so long as you stand out of the way. Two men to a boat who are working on one side and you stay on your side trying to not get sea sick. We went up one day to go fishing - at 5 in the morning no less - and I found out that the trick to not being sea sick is to keep busy. So I chopped the frozen mackerel's in half or put the elastics on the lobsters's pincers or simple walked around. As soon as I sat down for an extended period of time I could feel my heart rising into my throat and my head getting a bit groggy. Not a very pleasant sensation.

Another thing I found out is that the lobster traps attract more than just the lobster. This being the end of the spring lobster season - the lobster getting "sick" as they say here in order to shed the shells - the traps were mostly empty. Not even enough in them to pay for the fisherman's gas which means that we came back to shore a good 4 hours ahead of schedule. But I did manage to swap a few crabs from the traps before we left. They don't charge for these. They're barely worth anything and they'd have thrown them back in the water anyways so we got a good little treat. And a few hours of taking these apart. You thought lobster was hard to dissect. Try a small crab. Now that's a real pain in the ass.

So true to North American fashion, we ate the majority of our lobster with garlic butter. It's the first time I ate my lobster cold and I think I prefer it this way. When you cook your lobster it tends to get tepid by the time you've started to eat it anyways. So being cold already, you just crack and dip. You don't have to rush. Unless you've got a cooler full of lobster you've got to get through. But I don't think that that's the case for most normal people. Plus our cold lobster had been cooked the same day it was taken out of the water and eaten no more than a few days after that. Fresh is an understatement.

Being a gourmand (or gourmet?) I couldn't be satisfied with eating my lobster just one way. So in the photo above you can see the cold cooked lobster, a ramekin full of fresh garlic butter and a mess of Jamie Oliver's Sticky Finger Lobster taken from Cook with Jamie. This recipe was simply amazing for someone whose never eaten their lobster any other way than whole. The sauce was a mixture of loads of pepper, honey, chopped green onions, garlic, ginger and lemon juice. Though the recipe calls for slicing a live lobster in half and then slathering the different sections with the sauce before baking them in the oven for 12 to 15 minutes till done, I only had cold cooked lobster available. But it worked beautifully anyways. The sauce caramelized and became sticky and delicious. Topped with fresh cilantro and chopped red chilies (or my Thai Hot Sauce which gave it a really delicious flavourful kick) I will certainly eat my lobster like this again. What the hell, eh! When you've got enough lobster to experiment you take the advantage. The results are pure deliciousness.

With the crab, so far, my girlfriend made a crab dip which can be found on almost all apetizer lists in restaurants across Canada. You can find a recipe anywhere on the net but it's basically just a creamy crab dip that I prefer serving with toasted pita slices rather than salty nacho chips. I broiled a good layer of parmesan cheese on top. It makes for a nice apetizer or rich lunch. Loaded with fresh crab meat, you can't go wrong.

I've also got a recipe for crab on toast that's simply dressed with lemon juice and a few other things but that's for another post. Plus that recipe calls for the brown meat inside the shell but cracking a lobster open I wasn't sure what was poop and what was meat. I'll have to go get a course from my local fish monger. I'm not putting anything in my mouth that's brown unless I know for sure that it's meat.

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