How to Make Classic Lobster Stock at Home
Lobster stock is a flavorful liquid made by simmering lobster shells and other ingredients in water. It is a critical ingredient in many seafood dishes, including soups, stews, and sauces, and it is prized for its rich seafood flavor.
To make lobster stock, you will need a few pounds of lobster shells, which can be obtained by cooking and removing the meat from live lobsters. Place the shells in a large pot or stockpot and add enough water to cover them by about an inch. Bring the water to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer the shells for about 30 minutes.
While the shells are simmering, you can prepare the other ingredients for the stock. These might include vegetables such as onions, carrots, and celery, as well as herbs and spices like parsley, thyme, and bay leaves. Some recipes also call for white wine or tomato paste to add depth of flavor.
Once the shells have simmered for about 30 minutes, add the vegetables and other ingredients to the pot. Continue to simmer the stock for another hour or so, until the vegetables are tender and the stock has a rich, lobster flavor.
After the stock has finished simmering, strain it through a fine-mesh sieve to remove the shells and vegetables. Press down on the solids with a spoon to extract as much liquid as possible. The resulting lobster stock can be used immediately, or it can be cooled and stored in the refrigerator or freezer for later use.
A Versatile Ingredient
Lobster stock is a versatile ingredient that can be used in a variety of dishes. It is a key component in many seafood soups and stews, and it can also be used to add flavor to sauces and risotto.
It is particularly delicious when paired with other seafood, such as shrimp, scallops, and mussels, and it can also be used to add depth of flavor to pasta dishes and grain bowls.
Lobster stock is an essential ingredient in any seafood kitchen. It is relatively easy to make, and it adds a rich, seafood flavor to a wide variety of dishes. Whether you're making a classic lobster bisque or a simple pasta sauce, a little bit of lobster stock can go a long way in adding depth and complexity to your dishes.
If we start thinking of stock as more of a frugal technique and less of a lofty art, I believe that more people would make stock, and our food would taste better. It's why it is one of the first techniques they teach new students in culinary schools around the country.
While this “recipe” is for lobster stock, please know that you can substitute almost anything for the lobster: shrimp shells, fish bones, turkey wings, veal bones, and roasted vegetables to make all manner of flavorful stocks.
Lobster Stock Recipe
- Crush the shells with a hammer or meat mallet (or skillet). Brush with some olive oil and roast in a 400° F oven until they are bright red - about half an hour. They will smell awful, so make sure your exhaust fan is on or that you can open a window.
- Brush some tomato paste on the shells during the last fifteen minutes of roasting.
- Put the roasted shells in a stock pot along with the rest of your ingredients. Cover with cold water, and slowly increase the temperature to a simmer. Adjust heat to maintain a slow simmer. Simmer for about 1½ to 2 hours: strain and chill.
- You can reduce the stock by half by gently boiling it on the stove to save storage space. Either way, store it in the refrigerator for a week or in the freezer for three months.
How to Purchase Restaurant Quality Lobster Stock
Until now, classic lobster stock was unavailable to home cooks unless they: prepared it themselves, begged a professional chef for some, or settled for a commercial brand loaded with m.s.g. and other chemicals.
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