As a New England gal who calls California home, no summer visit back to Rhode Island is considered complete until I've gotten my lobster fix. Preferably enjoyed at a seaside shack after a day at the beach--no frills steamed lobster served with butter that drips down my chin, which is still salty from playing in the waves. The kind of meal that requires a good hosing down when you are done. Occasionally, my family gets the lobsters to go and prepares them at home. In which case, I always insist on a few extra for lobster salad the next day. This recipe puts a Californian twist on my RI roots. —Ms. T
4 as a first course or light lunch
small limes, zested and juiced
chopped chives, plus extra for garnish
fresh tarragon, chopped
cooked lobster meat, cut into bite-sized chunks and chilled
small fennel bulb, trimmed and finely diced
fresh ripe mango fruit, diced
head butter lettuce, leaves separated, cleaned and torn into pieces
ripe avocados, halved, pitted and removed from skin
tangerines or 1 orange, peeled, sectioned (membranes removed, if you want to be fussy). Reserve 1 tsp zest for dressing.
Combine the mayonnaise, mustard, lime zest and juice, cayenne pepper, chives and tarragon in a large bowl. Season with salt and pepper. Gently fold in lobster, fennel and mango. Taste and season with more salt.
Whisk together ingredients for salad dressing and toss with lettuce to coat.
To serve, divide salad greens among 4 plates. Place an avocado half in the center of each plate and top avocado with lobster salad. Arrange clementine
sections on top of greens, around the avocado. Garnish lobster salad with chives and serve.
A museum marketing professional 8 hours a day, and a gal who's dreaming, drooling, obsessing about food for the other 18 hours. Wait, that doesn't add up to 24? Oh, that's because I'm counting the hours I'm supposed to be working that I dream about food (don't tell my boss).
Several years ago, I started a cooking club with six girlfriends...ten years later...many of our addresses and last names have changed, our palettes have gotten more sophisticated and the wine has gotten less cheap. We now usually sit at dining room tables like grownups instead of on cushions on the floor of studio apartments, and the conversations have shifted with the life stages...but we're still going strong, the food gets better every month, and nothing is more pleasurable than sharing an afternoon laughing, eating, and trading tips on recipes and life.