A week after every new employee starts at Food52, they answer a series of ice-breaking questions at our company meeting, including "What food did you used to not like that you have learned to enjoy?"
While the question game was not in place when I started many moons ago, (44 moons ago to be exact), if I were to answer it, I'd have to say mayonnaise.
I hated mayonnaise growing up. H.A.T.E.D. If I'd see a babysitter putting it in a casserole, I'd refuse to eat when it arrived on my plate hours later. Sandwich breads had to be spread with mustard to not be rejected. Coleslaw? No way.
In my third decade, I can finally say my dislike has waned. I love a good tuna melt or mayo-coated grilled cheese. I am mayo sandwich-friendly, in all cases but one: the lobster roll.
Lobster is so sweet and tender—I'll never understand hiding it behind mayo and cold temperatures. I'll take a Connecticut style lobster roll over New England's "dragged through the garden" roll (who needs herbs?) or a Maine lobster roll any day. The warm, butter laden, mayo-free lobster roll is perfect to me.
And it was this type of roll, plus Amanda Hesser's Brown Butter Tomatoes, that got me thinking after I recently ordered the Lobster Caprese Salad at the Inlet restaurant in Montauk, New York: What if I were to combine the brown butter with the cooked lobster, so that when they're both poured over the tomato and mozzarella they all cooked a little?
I tried it, and loved it. And hope you will too!
- 1 beefsteak tomato, thinly sliced
- 2 slices of fresh mozzerella, diced
- 4 tablespoons butter
- 2 cooked lobster claws
- Fresh raw corn, optional
- 1 handful torn basil
- Salt to taste