Lobster, in and of itself, is boring.
I know, you *can't believe I said that* because to most plebs, lobster is the epitome of luxury gourmet eats. But think about it for a minute: when you order lobster, are you getting it for the actual taste, or is it the mere idea of the most expensive thing on the menu in your white tablecloth restaurant that appeals to you? When you think about what needs to be done to even make lobster have flavor, it feels like the spiny cockroach of the sea should be on the same level as a potato, which is just a conveyor of whatever you slut it up with. Amirite?
Dunk it in butter. Broil it with garlic butter. Chop it up with some mayonnaise and put it in a bun. The variations are endless, but all have the same goal: give it some damn flavor.
As I like a challenge, I thought I'd come up with a way to slut that shit up, but in a fancy-ass way that will satisfy your pedestrian-ass need to put your lobster in the proper context. Behold:
Listen, bitches: you don't even have to use lobster with this if you're not feeling super flush (or would rather spend your dinner party budget on booze, which makes everyone more interesting and can only lead to the best shenanigans). Just use monkfish. Truly. Ask any fishmonger and he'll wipe his giant hands on his grotty apron while telling you, "Looks like monster, tastes like lobster."
I've basically taken the classic lobster bisque, a tomatoey, thick soup with tons of lobster bits and a puff pastry crust, and turned it into a burger. The sauv blanc greens keep it from being too heavy and the goat cheese gives it a punch of funky saltiness. You're welcome.
Anyhoo, there's a lot of fucking steps in this recipe and if you get bored, here's the breakdown: 1) Make lobster patties with some panko, fry them and bake them 2) Make buns out of puff pastry 3) Make some tomato bisque with the lobster shells and/or fish stock 4) Toss some greens with sauv blanc and mustard 5) Assemble
Or, if you're bored and/or have a lot of time on your hands:
4 lobster tails, shells removed and reserved
1 tablespoon lemon zest
1 tablespoon lemon juice
Salt and pepper to taste
1 cup panko
1 cup red onion, diced
1 cup celery, diced
1 cup carrot, diced
6 tablespoons butter, divided
2 cups fish stock (lobster stock is best)
4 ounces tomato paste
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
2 sheets frozen puff pastry dough, thawed
2 tablespoons sauvignon blanc
1 shallot, minced
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 tablespoons tarragon, chopped
2 cups mixed greens
4 tablespoons flour
1/4 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup vegetable oil
4 tablespoons herbed goat cheese, crumbled
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Add lemon zest, lemon juice, egg, salt and pepper to taste to a medium bowl. Whisk until well incorporated. Dice the lobster meat and add to the lemon mixture. Stir in panko, then form into 4 patties. Refrigerate until ready to use.
Add red onion, celery, carrot and 2 tablespoons of the butter to a large stock pot. Cook on medium high heat, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are softened and browning on the edges, about 7-10 minutes. Add the lobster stock, tomato paste, cayenne pepper, salt and pepper, stirring to combine. Bring to a boil and add the lobster shells. Cover, turn to medium-low heat and simmer for at least 30 minutes.
Place puff pastry sheets on a flat surface and use a ring mold to cut 8 5-inch rounds. Place on a large baking sheet and poke holes in the dough with a fork. Bake for 20 minutes or until puffed and golden. Set aside.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the sauvignon blanc, shallot, olive oil, tarragon, salt and pepper to taste. Toss with the mixed greens and set aside.
When bisque is done simmering, pour entire mixture through a colander and then a cheesecloth, straining out any solid matter. While the mixture drains, melt remaining 4 tablespoons of butter in the stockpot on medium heat. Add the flour and stir to mix well. Cook, stirring often, for about 6 minutes. Add the bisque back in slowly, whisking to incorporate. Turn to low heat and stir in the cream.
Heat the vegetable oil in a large skillet. Fry the lobster patties for 3-5 minutes per side, then place on a large baking sheet. Place the sheet of patties in the oven for 5-10 minutes or until cooked through.
Place half of the puff pastry ‘buns’ on a serving platter, and add equal amounts of the dressed greens to each. Add a lobster patty to the greens, then spoon about 3 tablespoons of the bisque to each patty, then add equal amounts of goat cheese. Top with remaining puff pastry buns and serve.
Makes 4 burgers. And if you made it all the way down here without giving up, I commend you, sir.