Lobster is known as an elegant, high-end type of seafood. You'll often see it at upscale restaurants, served as a surf and turf dish. It presents itself with a beautiful red tail, rich, flavourful white meat, with a fresh water aroma.
Lobster tails are a beautiful and delicious dish to serve at home with family, especially for holidays and special occasions. Below is a guide to preparing and cooking lobster tails in various methods.
PREPARING LOBSTER TAILS FOR COOKING
Follow the thawing instructions on the package, or place in refrigerator overnight to thaw.
The best way to prepare lobster tails is to cut the tail down the centre lengthwise or cut and butterfly them. In the butterfly method, you can pull the meat out on top of the shell but ensure there is still meat attached to the tail fin. If you boil them, do not cut the shell.
Season with your choice of spices. If you choose to steam, bake, grill or broil, brush a melted lemon butter on it as well.
Boiling lobster tails will cook the meat quickly but dilute the flavour. Cook the whole lobster tail in boiling salt water. Add the tails to the water. Cook until the meat is opaque, pinkish-white and the shell turns red. A good rule of thumb is 1 minute per ounce. Once it is ready, drain the water and cool enough to separate the meat and shell. Season to your liking.
A popular method to cook lobster is steaming. This will cook the lobster meat well and enrich the flavour of the meat. The high heat will cook it evenly and help release the meat from the shell. Cook for 45-60 seconds per ounce. When lobster tails are cooked, the meat is opaque, pinkish-white and the shell turns red. Once it is cooked, you can season to your liking.
Another popular method is baking lobster tails in the oven. This will gently steam and cook them at a consistent temperature. Place on a baking dish. Season the lobster tails to your liking. Bake in the oven at 425°F (218°C) with a small amount of water in the dish. Cook for 1-2 minutes per ounce or until the meat is opaque, pinkish-white and the shell turns red.
Cooking lobster tails on the grill will add a smoky flavour. Use a metal or wooden skewer through the centre of the tails. Preheat the grill and cook the lobster tails over direct medium heat. Brush the top of the meat with lemon butter and season to your liking.
If you just cut the tail down the centre, place the lobster cut side down for 4 to 5 minutes, then flip over to finish. If you’ve butterflied them with the meat out, place the lobster with the meat side up the entire cooking time. When lobster tails are cooked, the meat is opaque, pinkish-white and the shell turns red.
For a light crisp on the shell, try broiling lobster tails. This method uses high heat which will enhance the meat flavour even more. Place the tails on a baking sheet. Season to your liking. Place 10 inches away from the top of the broiling element. This high heat will cook them quickly, about 1 minute per ounce. It is best to check the tails often for doneness. When lobster tails are cooked, the meat is opaque, pinkish-white and the shell turns red.
Serve lobster tails with lemon wedges or lemon-butter sauce.
Note: Since appliances vary, these are guidelines only. Product should be cooked thoroughly until an internal temperature of 165°F (74°C) is reached.