2109 Homard à l’Américaine

Preparation info

  • For


    lobster of 800–900 g 1¾–2 lbs .
    • Difficulty


Appears in

Le Guide Culinaire

By Auguste Escoffier

Published 1903

  • About


The first requirement for this dish is that the lobster must be a live one.

Cut the tail into sections; remove the claws and crack them so as to facilitate the removal of the flesh after cooking; split the carapace in half lengthways and remove the sac which is found near the top of the head (this usuallly contains a little gravel). Place the creamy parts and coral from the head on one side and reserve for use. Season the pieces of lobster with salt and pepper.

Heat 4 tbs oil and 30 g (1 oz) butter in a shallow pan until very hot, place in the pieces of lobster and fry quickly on all sides until the flesh is well set and the shells have turned a good red colour.

Drain off the fat by tilting the pan on one side with its lid on, then sprinkle the lobster with 2 finely chopped shallots and 1 small clove of crushed garlic. Add ¼ dl (1 fl oz or ⅛ U.S. cup) flamed brandy, 2 dl (7 fl oz or ⅞ U.S. cup) white wine, dl (5 fl oz or ⅝ U.S. cup) Fish Stock, 1 tbs melted Meat Glaze, 150 g (5½ oz) roughly chopped flesh only of tomato or 1½ tbs tomato purée, ½ dl (2 fl oz or ¼ U.S. cup) Sauce Demi-glace, a pinch of roughly chopped parsley and a touch of Cayenne pepper. Cover with the lid and cook gently for 15–20 minutes.

When cooked, transfer the pieces of lobster to a dish, remove the flesh from the sections and claws and place them in a timbale or deep dish with the two halves of the carapace on top standing up against each other; keep warm.

Reduce the cooking liquid to 2 dl (7 fl oz or ⅞ U.S. cup) and add the reserved creamy parts and coral chopped together with approximately 15 g (½ oz) butter. Reheat and pass through a fine strainer. Reheat again for a few minutes without allowing it to boil, then add away from the heat, 100 g (3½ oz) butter in small pieces. Pour this sauce over the lobster and sprinkle with a little roughly chopped parsley.