Lobsters are abundant in Cuban waters, but since the bulk of the catch is exported, they are a delicacy that seldom reaches the table of ordinary Cubans. Even in expensive government tourist restaurants and paladares (private restaurants), where the prices are in convertible pesos, lobster is not officially on the menu, though it is often offered verbally as a special. One of the most traditional Cuban recipes for both lobster and shrimp is this simple preparation with a sofrito of onion and bell pepper in a spicy, but not incendiary, tomato sauce. We have been fortunate to taste excellent langostas enchiladas both in Havana and Miami. Serve the lobster with hot fluffy white or yellow rice.
With a sharp chef’s knife, cut through the shell and flesh of the lobster tails at each joint, dividing them into sections. Use a toothpick or small skewer to push out the reddish vein that runs down the back of each segment of the tail.
In a large, heavy sauté pan or deep skillet over medium heat, heat the oil. Add the lobster sections and sauté until the shells turn red, about 5 minutes. Add the onions and bell peppers and cook, stirring, until the onions turn translucent, 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in the tomato sauce, wine, vinegar, garlic, chile, and sugar. Taste and season with salt and pepper. Add the bay leaf and
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