Summer

Maine Lobster Bake with Old Bay Compound Butter

July  6, 2016
Photo by Mary Catherine Tee
Author Notes

This lobster bake technique is not new to the culinary world- throw a lot of stuff into a pot, dump in a bottle of wine or several cans of beer, cover and steam until the food is done. It's a pretty impressive spread when all is said and done and it's relatively hands-off, so that leaves more time to spend with guests and friends. The accouterment to everything that cooks in the pot is a big batch of Old Bay Compound Butter. No need to clarify. Just slather it on to all the things. Note: It's my own philosophy that seafood is perfect as-is. The less gussying up, the better, so I don't add any seasoning to the bake while its cooking because you can't escape [too much] seasoning when its done. —Mary Catherine Tee

  • Serves 6
Ingredients
  • For the Lobster Bake
  • 6 lobster
  • 6 ears of fresh corn (husks removed and put aside), cut in half
  • 4 pounds small, whole red potatoes
  • 6 chorizo sausages
  • 3 pounds little neck clams
  • 1 dozen raw eggs
  • 1 bottle dry white wine or 2 cans of beer
  • 8 pounds seaweed (optional)
  • loaf of grilled, crusty bread for serving
  • For the Old Bay Compound Butter
  • 2 unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 2 cloves garlic, pressed through a garlic press
  • 2 tablespoons Old Bay Seasoning
  • juice from 1/4 lemon
In This Recipe
Directions
  1. For the Lobster Bake
  2. Start a fire in a fire pit with hardwood. Let it burn for about an hour, feeding the fire, until it gets very hot and coals/embers burn white.
  3. In an 6 or 8 gallon pot, line the bottom with a generous amount (roughly 4 pounds) of seaweed or half of the corn husks to prevent the lobster from burning.
  4. Layer lobster, corn, potatoes, sausages, clams, and eggs (in that order) in the pot. Pour in beer or wine (whichever using). Cover with remaining corn husks or seaweed.
  5. Cover pot and place directly on coals or on a grate that hovers closely over the flame. Let steam for 45 minutes. After 45 minutes, dump contents of pot on a table covered with newspaper and dig in.
  6. Note: After about 15 minutes or so, you may want to give the top corn husks/seaweed a squirt of water. I used a standard spray bottle and sprayed a little moisture in twice throughout to ensure everything didn't get too dry, but being careful not to leave the top off to let all the moisture evaporate.
  1. For the Old Bay Compound Butter
  2. On a cutting board, pour Old Bay Seasoning over the pressed garlic. Then add the juice from ¼ of a lemon. Run the side of a large chef’s knife over the mixture repeatedly until a paste forms. Add butter to the garlic-Old Bay mixture and cut the ingredients into each other by using the back of your knife or a fork. When smooth and creamy, transfer butter to a jar or from into a log and wrap in parchment if feeling fancy.

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I’m an old soul. My favorite Saturday morning activity is watching birds on the feeder while drinking strong, black coffee out of my favorite hand-thrown mug. My favorite place to kill time is in antique stores. The less organized the better. I like full-bodied red wines and bitter IPAs. I live for feeling the warmth of sunshine and hearing the stillness of freshly fallen snow. I can thank my stint in Alaska for that. I have salt water in my veins, having grown up in Eastern NC, and (shhh…don’t tell any of my Mainer friends this about me) I prefer blue crab over lobster.