This grilled lobster recipe from Bryan Webb is a great dish for dinner parties. You can start preparing the seafood hours in advance and everyone appreciates the sheer luxury of freshly cooked lobster. Even around the British coast it is rare to see anyone selling live lobsters (though you’ll see lobster pots aplenty in the seaside towns), so ask your local fishmongers – they should be able to supply you with some.
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To make the flavoured butter, put the butter in a mixing bowl and grate in the ginger and garlic. Add the lime juice and mix together. Deseed and finely chop the chilli and add to the butter. Roughly chop the coriander leaves and stalks, add to the butter and mix well. Season with salt and pepper
250g of butter
1 tbsp of root ginger
2 garlic cloves
1 red chilli
1 bunch of coriander
Lay two sheets of cling film on top of each other on a work surface. Scrape the butter onto the cling film, then roll up tightly into a large cylinder. This will keep in the fridge for up to a week
Put the lobsters in the freezer. This should render them insensate
To cook the lobsters, you will need a large lidded pot big enough to immerse them completely. Fill with water, add a generous quantity of salt and bring to the boil. Roughly chop the carrot, onion and celery and add to the boiling water with the herbs. Boil for 5 minutes
1 large carrot
2 sprigs of thyme
1 bunch of fresh parsley
2 bay leaves
Place each lobster on its back with its claws tied and hold it firmly by the top of its head. Place the tip of a very sharp chef's knife on the head just beneath its mouth, lining the blade up with the lobsterʼs midline with the blade side pointed toward its tail
Pierce the lobsterʼs head downward, then place the knife tip just to the body side
of the junction of its tail and thorax and cut through the midline
Holding each lobster over the back, tuck the tail underneath then drop the lobsters into the water and put the lid back on. Return to the boil for 1 minute, then switch off the heat and leave for 5 minutes before removing the lobsters from the pot
Lay each lobster on a board with the tail extended and split lengthways using a heavy knife. Discard the stomach sac from the head and the viscera from the tail. Reserve any juices – do not rinse the lobsters under water as this washes away their flavour. Scrape out and discard all the gungy meat from the head
Disjoint the claws and carefully crack the end joints, removing the meat in the largest pieces possible. Use a small teaspoon or lobster-pick to extract the meat from all the other joints
Cut each tail into five pieces and place them back in the half-shell. Sit the lobsters on a baking tray. Divide the rest of the meat between the heads then pour any collected juices back over the lobsters. This can be done hours in advance and the lobsters kept covered with cling film
When almost ready to serve, preheat the oven to 200°C/Gas mark 6 and a grill on the highest setting. Slice the butter and place it over the lobsters. Put them in the oven for 5 minutes then under the hot grill until golden brown. Serve immediately
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