Merry Christmas Everyone! Here's wishing you the best of the holiday season and a special day filled with love, laughter and of course, delicious food too!
While next year it's entirely possible we'll be enjoying Pacific Northwest dungeness crab caught by my great white hunter/fisher guy, this year we looked to the northeast for our special seafood fix. Two big and beautiful lobster tails turned into a memorable Christmas Eve dinner, thanks to a Rachael Ray recipe and a little JBug ingenuity.
Quickly steamed then removed from the shells, the lobster was sliced into large chunks and sauteed in butter with 4 ounces of crab (actually I used Krab), then hit a thick sherry flavored bechamel sauce loaded with Old bay seasoning, a touch of paprika a little Dijon mustard. Piled back into the reserved shells, they're topped with a mixture of crushed Ritz crackers, panko, grated parmesan and butter before heading to the broiler for a quick toasting.
Our delicious, delectable succulent lobster was served with scoops of rosemary and lemon flavored risotto (recipe here), courtesy of the Big Guy. He's the risotto makin' machine in our kitchen!
Lobster Tails Thermidor with Crab (from JBug’s Kitchen adapted from Rachael Ray)
2 extra large lobster tails
6 tablespoons butter, divided
1/2 medium yellow onion, finely diced
3 tablespoons all purpose flour
3 tablespoons dry sherry
3/4 cup half and half
1/3 cup white cheddar, finely grated
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon Old Bay seasoning
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
Salt & coarse ground pepper
4 ounces crab (I used Krab…the imitation stuff because I’d already blown the budget on the lobster)
6 Ritz crackers, pressed into crumbs
3 tablespoons panko crumbs
3 tablespoons parmesan cheese
2 tablespoons melted butter
Bring approximately 4 inches of water to a boil in a large pot and cook lobster tails for 8 minutes. Immediately place cooked tails into an ice water bath to cool. Drain well. Using kitchen shears cut away soft underside of tails, leaving hard shell intact and remove meat. Arrange shells in shallow individual gratin dishes or 1 larger dish. Chop cooked meat on an angle leaving it in large chunks. Set aside.
Melt 3 tablespoons of butter in a small pot. Add onion and sauté until very soft, stirring often. Whisk in flour and cook, stirring for 1 minute, then slowly whisk in sherry and half and half. Cook, stirring constantly until mixture is very thick. Stir in cheddar, paprika, Old Bay, mustard and season lightly with salt and pepper. Set aside.
Melt remaining 3 tablespoons butter in a large sauté pan over medium heat and add lobster and crab. Cook until warmed through. Stir in prepared béchamel sauce. Spoon ingredients into lobster shells and allow to over flow sides of shells.
Preheat broiler. Combine cracker crumbs, panko, parmesan and melted butter. Dust mixture on top of lobster and place under broiler until crumbs are browned and crisp. Serves 2.