“Call 911. It’s the Lobster Squad ... Talk to ’em! You speak shellfish ...”
romaine or gem lettuce
Half a lemon
Once you’ve gotten your live lobster home put it in the freezer for 30 minutes to 1 hour. When the lobster is stunned, get your largest pot (make sure you have the lid) and fill about two thirds of it with water. Add a tablespoon of salt and bring the water to the boil. Lower the heat and pop in the lobster. Make sure it’s submerged, adding boiling hot water if needs be, and put the lid on straight away. Simmer for 15 minutes for the first 450g and a further 10 minutes for each extra 450g. We simmered ours for 20 minutes in total.
Meanwhile, make your cocktail sauce by mixing the mayonnaise and tomato ketchup; add a good splash of tabasco and Worcestershire sauce to taste. You can get your cocktail glasses ready by placing the shredded lettuce in the bottom of the glass.
When your lobster is ready, remove it using a slotted spoon and put on a chopping board, allowing it to cool for 5 minutes. Now you can get the meat out. Twist off the claws and break them into sections. Crack the claw shell with a hammer or nutcracker. Remove the flesh. Twist off the legs from the body and break them into sections, using a toothpick to remove the flesh. Carefully split the lobster in half along its length from head to tail using a large, sharp knife. Remove and throw away the pale stomach sac, the gills and the dark intestinal thread that runs the length of the tail. You’ll find some beautiful meat in the tail, which is easily removed in large pieces, and some soft flesh from the shell. (Here’s how to use the leftover shell and body to make a stock http://bit.ly/lobsterstock.)
Divide the lobster meat equally between the cocktail glasses by sitting them on top of your lettuce. Squeeze a little lemon juice over each glass before spooning over a teaspoon or so of the cocktail sauce. Enjoy with a chilled white wine and think about how you’re going to explain the ordeal of cooking a live lobster to your analyst.