This started out as a four-part post, but lobsters just keep giving. So here's another classic - Lobster Bisque. Bisque is the best way to savour every last scrap of your fruits de mer. A lobster's casing is full of flavour. You know what they say - waste not, want not. Next time you prepare crustaceans, remember to put a bisque on the menu too.
The only reason I'm calling this a poor man's version is because I don't put any of the meat back into the broth. It's all carcass and shells, veggies, a dash of cheap white wine, and home-smoked bacon. Part 1 - Cooking the Lobster Part 2 - Lobster Eggs Benedict Part 3 - Flatbread Lobster Roll Part 4 - Lobster Stuffed Shells
• shells and bodies of 4 lobsters, roughly chopped in pieces • 8 thick slices smoked bacon (optional) • 1 cup white wine • 2 medium onions, chopped • 2 medium carrots, chopped • 2 branches celery, chopped • 1 tablespoon tomato paste • 2 garlic cloves • 2 bay leaves • 2 sprigs of thyme • 1/2 cup butter • 1/2 cup flour
In a large pot, cook the bacon for 5 minutes. Add the onions, carrots, celery, and garlic and cook for another 5 minutes. Add the wine and simmer until reduced by half. Put the lobster shells in and just cover with water (or, for more flavour, cover with the liquid you used to cook the lobsters). Add bay leaves, thyme and tomato paste.
Simmer for 45 minutes.
Strain and discard the solids.
In the same pot, melt the butter and stir in the flour. Then add the liquid back to the pot a bit at a time. This will thicken the bisque. Season with salt and pepper.
Illustration by Kevin Sprouls.