Perhaps a little lobster tail for New Year’s Eve? Tradition has it that you must eat lobster before midnight because lobsters move sideways and are bottom feeders. Fish are OK after midnight because they swim forward. And for the New Year’s is all about moving forward! You don’t want to break your tradition do you?
Down South, black-eyed peas and cornbread are a tradition in the United States, doughnuts are popular in Poland and of course lentils in Italy. Roasted pig is also very popular in Asian countries but for some reason, lobster remains a favorite on many menus and in homes across the world.
Lobster has become a luxury dish over the years, a far cry from when the pilgrims first arrived in America and used lobster as fish bait because it was so plentiful. For a while it was even served in prisons. Go figure!
Think about it, lobster is rich and flavorful. Definitely a delicacy. Whether baked or broiled, deviled or stuffed, served with drawn butter or sautéed in a rich cream sauce, the 100-million-year-old crustacean has become a must on New Year’s Eve.
And so my friends, I share with you one of my favorite recipes for lobster that I’m sure you will enjoy.
Felice Anno Nuovo 2017!
Chef Jasper Mirabile’s Stuffed Lobster Tail
4 tablespoons butter, divided
1/4 cup minced shallots
4 ounces raw shrimp
4 ounces raw crab meat
1/2 ounce brandy
2 fresh sprigs of tarragon
1/4 cup heavy cream
Sea salt and black pepper to taste
1 cup oyster crackers
2 lobster tails
Melt 2 tablespoons of butter in a large skillet. Add shallots, shrimp and crab meat. Cook for 3 to 4 minutes and reduce pan with brandy. Add fresh tarragon and cream and cook for a few more minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Let cool and add crackers. Mix well.
With a cleaver or chef’s knife, split lobster tails in half, length wise. Remove lobster tail and place back in the shell. Drizzle with remaining butter.
Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
Place stuffing over each tail and bake at least 15-20 minutes until stuffing is golden.
Chef Jasper J. Mirabile Jr. of Jasper’s runs his family’s 62-year-old restaurant with his brother. Mirabile is a culinary instructor, founding member of Slow Food Kansas City and a national board member of the American Institute of Wine and Food. He is host to many famous chefs on his weekly radio show “Live! From Jasper’s Kitchen” on KCMO 710 AM and 103.7 FM. He also sells dressings and sauces.