I feel like cooking something extreme tonight. As an act of “Self-indulgence”, I bought a two and a half pound lobster for dinner. I remember during a trip to Italy several years ago, the chef said “I’ll bring you the best from my kitchen”. So even without look at the menu, I said OK please impress me! Fifteen minutes later, he brought me a dish of yellow-red linguine with an intense smell of aroma and a big piece of lobster mix in it. That was the meal of my life!! He later told me that he enhanced the pasta flavor and taste with Iranian saffron cooked in a white wine and cream reduction. What a combination!
It is winter in Vancouver and all we get is rain and wind! I really needed something to lift my spirit and appetite so this special pasta dish took centre stage in my kitchen tonight.
- Cook your fresh lobster in a big pot of boiling water for five minutes.
- Put the lobster in the ice water right after five minutes so the meat and shell can separate for easy peeling.
- Use Spanish or Iranian saffron for the intense flavor. Turkish saffron can give you the yellow color but not the taste intensity.
Maine lobster 2 – 2 ½ lb x1
Fresh linguine 1 lb
Iranian saffron small pinch
White wine 1 cup
Fish stock 1 cup
Heavy cream ¾ cup
Kosher salt ½ teaspoon
White pepper 1/8 teaspoon
Italian parsley small bunch – chopped
Shallot x1 chopped
Garlic x1 chopped
Extra virgin olive oil 1/8 cup
Bring a big pot of water to boil and put the lobster in for five minutes. Take the lobster out after five minutes and cool it off right away in a big bowl of ice water for ten minutes, add ice if necessary. Remove the body of the lobster from the head and roll it gently on the cutting board so the meat can separate from the shell for easy removal. Use a nut cracker to open the pincers and take the meat out. Cut open the head of the lobster to half and put the shell in a small pot. Add fish stock and white wine to the lobster shell and bring it to boil under high heat. Reduce the liquid to half and remove the shell with a strainer. Add saffron and reduce heat to minimum. Cover it with a lid and let it simmer for five minutes.
Prepare another big pot of water for the linguine. Cook linguine to “al dente”, firm but not hard. Drain the water. Heat up the olive oil in a large sauté pan under medium heat. Cook the shallot and garlic till translucence but not burnt. Add the wine/fish stock/saffron reduction to the pan plus the heavy cream, season to taste. Turn heat back to high and add the linguine to the sauce and toss well. Add the lobster meat to the pasta and let the pasta absorb all the goodness of the liquid. Sprinkle with a small dash of Italian parsley…………dinner is served.