Whole Lobster in a Lightly Spiced Sauce with Barsac

Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Serves


Appears in

Great British Chefs

By Kit Chapman

Published 1989

  • About


  • 6 live lobsters each about 500 g ( lb) in weight

For the sauce

  • 300 ml (½ pt) fish stock
  • 150 ml (¼ pt) double cream
  • 85 ml (3 fl oz) Barsac
  • sliver of root ginger
  • sprig of coriander
  • a pinch of curry powder
  • 50 g (2 oz) unsalted butter
  • salt and pepper


To make the sauce, pour the fish stock, cream and Barsac into a saucepan, add the root ginger, coriander and curry powder, bring to the boil and simmer for about 10 minutes. Pass the sauce through a fine sieve, bring back to a simmer and whisk in the butter in small pieces. Check the consistency; if too thin, reduce, or if a little thick, add some more fish stock. Check the seasoning and keep warm.

To cook the lobsters, bring a very large pan of salted water to the boil and plunge them in. As soon as the water returns to the boil the lobsters should be cooked. Allow to cool slightly in the water. When cool remove the shell by cutting down each side of the belly with scissors, detach the membrane and take out the tail meat in one piece. To remove the claw meat, crack them open using a rolling pin or the back of a heavy knife, then twist the small pincer with your fingers and thumb to remove the central cartilage and the meat should slip out in one piece. Repeat this with all the lobsters.

To serve, take each lobster tail and cut it into slices. Spoon the sauce on to each plate and lay out the lobsters, in their original shape on top of the sauce.

This dish can be served with lightly cooked vegetables. You could also make little pastry tartlets and fill them with avocado and apple balls and a little of the sauce.