Lobster à la Mimic-Américaine ⁑

Lobster à l’Américaine, or for its full French name, Homard à l’Américaine, is a lobster dish of questionable origin. It is decidedly French, but that is about all that can be said with certainty. But whatever its source, lobster à l’Américaine is a delicious, albeit, laborious dish when made in the usual way. That’s why it has a wide variety of variations and optional ingredients. After investigating numerous recipes, I devised the Mimic-Américaine sauce, which forms the base of my dish. The other time saver is to use lobster tails from your supermarket, instead of whole live lobsters, as claimed to be absolutely necessary by more classic preparations.

  • 2 large lobster tails
  • ¼ cup <butter>
  • 1 lemon, cut in wedges
  • ½ cup Mimic-Américaine sauce

Begin by thawing the lobster tails, if frozen, by placing them directly into luke-warm water for 30 minutes. For giant lobster tails (those bigger than 10 oz each), replenish the water after 30 minutes and thaw for an additional 15–30 minutes, until they feel flexible.

The tails may be broiled or boiled. Each method produces different, but very satisying results. After cooking, the tail meat may be extracted, so that the shells may be used in the preparation of the Américaine sauce, or left intact, for a more garnished look on the plate.

If broiling, preheat the broiler. With a sharp knife or kitchen shears, carefully cut the top side of the lobster shells lengthwise. Place the lobster tails on a baking sheet, cut side up, and broil them until lightly browned and meat opaque, basting liberally with the <butter>, about 5 to 10 minutes.

If boiling, fill a pot with enough water to just cover the tails (seasoning is optional). Bring the water to a boil and gently drop tails into the pot one by one, wait for the water to reach a slow boil, and then reduce the heat and simmer, uncovered, for 3½ minutes. Remove the tails from the pot and give them a few minutes to cool down. Use a knife or sharp kitchen shears to cut through the soft underside of the shell and into the thickest part of the tail meat. If there are no signs of translucent, grayish coloring, then your boiled lobster tails are ready to serve. Otherwise, return to the pot for a minute or so.

Put about 2 oz of the sauce on each serving plate, place a lobster on each plate, pour another 2 oz of the sauce over the lobster, garnish with lemon wedges, and serve. Rice is a traditional side dish, or serve with cauliflower rice.

Serves 2.