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Old 07-03-2006, 05:48   #1
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Lobster

Any good lobster recipes, or preaparation tips?
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Old 07-03-2006, 12:29   #2
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Gord

Don't ask Alai Baba on Jost Van Dyk that question.
Was there last week and was the worst meal I ever tried to eat.
The lobster was very tough and even tasted burnt. Not to mention expensive.

Andy
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Old 07-05-2006, 18:39   #3
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Gord, I'm told that if you place them in the freezer first they will go into semi-hibernation. This supposedly is more merciful to them, but also prevents the release of stress hormones that can change the flavor.

Personally I suspect anything over 1-1/2 lbs. is a tough lobster. Either that, or all the alleged cooks out there are overcooking the big ones, because like any seafood they go from "cooked" to "vulcanized tasteless" in no time flat. So, the first few times you cook lobster, cook just one at a time, to see how far you are overcooking them.

Cooking a lobster is like reefing a sail. If you have to ask, you've already waited too long. Raw lobster is supposedly safe & served as sushi, fwiw.
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Old 08-05-2006, 08:03   #4
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I too used to believe that any lobster over 2 pounds or so would be tough. Then I went to a banquet in the Phillippines where 20 of us gorged on two spiny lobsters - one 2.6 kilos and the other 3.2 kilos. Yes kilos!

They were both exceptionally good. But we did feel a bit of regret about prompting the demise of two grand creatures. Well, at least until after the first round of drinks anyway..
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Old 08-05-2006, 18:39   #5
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Lobster (homurus americanus)

I ran a lobster pound / restaurant for many years, and I can tell you that I have eaten many lobsters between 5-10 lbs. If they are steamed properly they are as tender as a chicken lobster ( 1lber). Did you know the only reason they peg or band a lobster is to keep them from eating each other, or how you tell a male from a female. This could be important if you like the roe.

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Old 08-05-2006, 18:47   #6
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Thanks, Island Mike. Is there a consistent color code for the sexes? I have no use for lobster roe, I'd just as soon be able to pick bugs without it. Or, do I have just to trust that the place serving it might remember which they have?<G>

"If they are steamed properly" so many places just don't seem able to do that, including sea food houses that should know better. But then again, so many places have sand in the chowder, and vulcanized clams. UGH. At today's prices, that's a crime.

What's the deal on chicken lobsters? As a diver I know I'm not allowed to trap or take them, but somehow the restaurants all have them. Who's allowed to harvest them from where?
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Old 09-05-2006, 00:06   #7
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In Tasmania, the local variety of lobster is a rock-lobster that is colloquially known as a "crayfish". The legal measurement is not by weight but by size - the relevant measurement being the length of the carapace from the antennal horn back to the aft end of the carapace...this must be 4.25" (give or take, with the size being slightly different for male and female).

A legal size lobster will generally weigh at least a pound and a half. The biggest I caught myself was only about 5 lbs, but that day my friend caught one at 13 lb. I have friends who have caught 18 lb lobsters locally.

It costs me about $AUD 50 ($US 37) for my (non-commercial) fishing license, per year. This entitles me to Crayfish by diving, crayfish by pot, scallops by diving, abalone by diving, a grab-all net for fish.
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Old 09-05-2006, 04:45   #8
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Lobster

Hellosailor,

Lobsters have many different colors, green, blue, even rarely white, however, most are sort of a calico with predominatly green. Male and Females are the same, howver, where their tale meets the body there are two little hard projections on the male and on the female they are soft and feathery.

A chicken is just a term for a one pound lobster, weight is really not important it is the distance from behind the eye socket to the end of the body, I believe it is 3 and 3/16 inches. It is measured with a tool as they are caught. You must have a license to trap or you will be fined a very significant amount of money.


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Old 09-05-2006, 05:11   #9
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18 lb lobbie, wow, if it had claws you could really be in trouble collecting that by hand. but IIRC your crays dont.
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Old 09-05-2006, 08:08   #10
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I think Martha Stewart once suggested adding some vodka to the water in which you boil the lobsters, supposedly to help them relax (perhaps similar to the freezer trick mentioned above).
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Old 09-05-2006, 08:31   #11
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I wouldn’t bother with “relaxing” my live lobster (alcoholic anaesthetizing, freezing, etc.)

If Lobsters are dropped, one at a time, headfirst into rapidly boiling water, they die virtually instantly - before they can release any fear/pain induced adrenalin.

Any movement, in the pot, is the result of a postmortem release of muscle energy. Lobsters may make a high-pitched sound when they are boiled. Although it sounds like they are crying, it is actually the result of gases being released under their shells.
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Old 10-05-2006, 08:28   #12
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In the past we've also 'relaxed' Maine lobster by standing them on their head. Strangely enough they seem to settle down... and it's a real hoot for the kids!
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Old 10-05-2006, 10:19   #13
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Mike-
Got the gauge, had the license, understand the rules. Our DEC got a lot of good publicity one year by arresting a diver with illegal bugs in his bag. They followed the law and confiscated "everything" used in conjunction with his offense. Dive gear, CAR, and wetsuit. Left him standing in his bathing suit on the side of the parking lot. Word got around.<G>
I've never bothered weighing the ones I caught and gauged, nor bringing my gauge to a restaurant <G> but I didn't think anything that much shorter than the regs could still make weight. I guess what "the trade" calls chickens are what divers call "shorts" and what we call "chicken" around here, just means a lobster that's too small to be legal.
Kinda like asking someone what a "blackfish" is, as you go around the coasts.<G> Thanks for the explanation.
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Old 10-05-2006, 12:24   #14
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Hellosailer,

Yes they are pretty tough with you if they catch you with a "Short" as I always called them, or without a license etc.
Bye the way, here along the CT coast we call them tautogs.
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Old 11-05-2006, 05:20   #15
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Talking about lobster / crayfish sizes - diving once we found a crayfish on the West Ozzie coast that had been trapped in a old wooden cray pot almost welded into the reef face.
Not sure how long it had been there but breaking open the pot we got it to the surface and within an hour into several cook pots.
The hard copy photo we still have shows my wife Sue holding it by the horns and looking over the top of its head. She is 5 foot 7 inces - and the tail was lower than her knees.
Have no idea of the weight - but we had eight people eating that crayfish for lunch and dinner over two and a half days - so it was a biggie - and tender as.
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