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Just Five: Lobster Salad with Tarragon

February 6th 12:02pm, 2012

020612_justfiveDuring college I dated a boy who lived in Maine. One summer I went up to visit him when he was working in a small resort town. That’s when I fell in love with the lobster roll. Years later, my family went to Maine to visit my husband’s aunt, who happens to be a boat captain. We would visit docks and eat lobster rolls, throwing bits of white bun out to the gulls to the delight of our very young daughters – until the gulls started getting grabby and the girls started crying.

Here in landlocked St. Louis, lobster rolls aren’t readily available. There is nothing that comes close to that delicate, sweet lobster meat in a light mayonnaise dressing. And believe me, I try to convince my favorite restaurants to put a lobster roll on their menus regularly.

There is no secret to a great lobster roll, other than fresh lobster meat, and you can buy live lobsters relatively easily. For this dish, however, I bought a few frozen lobster tails and steamed them. It worked out quite well. Soaking the shallot in the lemon juice tempers the heat of the shallot and is a step you should not skip. I may have discussed my rather strong feelings about mayonnaise versus salad dressing before but it bears repeating: Use real mayonnaise!

To be clear, this Just Five recipe does not include the roll. If you choose to add one, I recommend a soft white hoagie.

Lobster Salad with Tarragon
Adapted by Dee Ryan from a recipe on epicurious.com

4 Servings
1 large shallot, mincedJuice of 1 lemon
½ tsp. salt
1 cup mayonnaise
¼ cup chopped fresh tarragon
3 cups of cooked, chopped lobster meat (from the tails and/or claws)
Freshly ground black pepper to taste

• Combine the shallot, lemon juice and salt in a medium glass bowl and let stand for 30 minutes at room temperature.
• Whisk the mayonnaise and chopped tarragon into the shallot-lemon juice mixture.
• Stir in the lobster meat and a few grinds of black pepper. Can be served as a salad or on a roll.

By Dee Ryan

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