Lobsters are a pretty classy dinner. They’re usually only served at the finer restaurants in town (Red Lobster aside- but that’s another topic all together), and usually come with a fairly hefty price tag. If you and your girl are having lobsters for dinner, its safe to say it’s a pretty special night.
But you can have all the fun of a lobster dinner and get all of the credit without the fancy restaurant and oversized bill. If your grocery store is anything like mine this time of year, lobster prices are at an all time low. I've got absolutely no clue why that is, but I'm not complaining! Lobster epitomizes summer, and serves as the ideal cornerstone for a farmer’s market fresh dinner date. All you have to do is boil some corn and new potatoes, melt some butter, pour the wine, and dinner is done. Don’t let your squeamishness about the whole killing your dinner thing hold you back- you can order your lobsters pre-cooked and ready to be eaten. No muss, no fuss, and no guilty conscience as you dig into dinner. You can even order them pre-cracked, but I think that kind of spoils the fun of the whole experience. Making a mess and getting covered in butter is half the fun, and makes for an interactive date.
If you take pride in cooking your crustaceans yourself, do it the humane way and place them all in a pot of room temperature water. As you slowly bring the pot up to a boil, the lobsters just drift off into a sleepy haze and don’t notice a thing; or at least that’s what I tell myself anyway. That way you avoid the dreaded “scream” the lobsters make when you drop them into a full on boiling pot (which is really just steam escaping, but I can’t bear it just the same). I’ve also heard that you can rub the lobsters’ “noses” (do they have them?) between their eyes, and it relaxes them, but I have a suspicion that’s another self-soothing fallacy. Either way, your lobsters and your date will thank you for being so considerate.
Once you’ve got your dinner components set, you just need to equip yourself and your date with the right tools to eat. Set out two lobster crackers, some small forks, a bowl for the shells, and a big pile of napkins. You can even set out some of those big lobster bibs; your date will appreciate the outfit protection.
How To Eat A Lobster
- Break off the claws starting up at the joints close to the body. Set these aside.
- Over a large bowl, grab the tail end with one hand and the upper body with your other hand, and break them apart in one decisive motion. Pull the little legs off the upper body, and then discard it. (Some people like to go nosing around in there. Not my thing, but by all means go for it!)
- Make an incision along the underside of the tail, where it’s softer, and then bend the sides back to break it open. Pull out the delicious tail meat and wipe off any nasty green stuff.
- To get at the arm meat, break apart the joints along the arm, using your cracker if needed, and poke the meat out with your little fork.
- Use your cracker to break open the claw, and pull out the meat. Make sure you get the little piece of cartilage out from the space between the two pinchers.
- If you like, you can break open the little legs and poke out the little bit of meat in them, or run your teeth along them to get it out.
- Dunk all the pieces in melted butter, squeeze over some lemon, and enjoy the fruits of your labor!
Serve Lobster With
- Melted butter (clarify it if you like, I don’t usually bother)
- Sliced lemon wedges
- Corn (on the cob, or sliced into a corn salad)
- Boiled new potatoes, (dip them into the butter!)
- Tomato/ Caprese salad
- Cold white wine, frosty beers, or, ideally, champagne