Bay or Slipper Lobster with Oyster and Caviar Sauce

I have used bay or slipper lobsters (both are “flat” lobsters of the Scyllaridae family) instead of spiny lobsters (langouste or crawfish, all names for the same kind of lobster of the family Paniluridae), which, although the most glorious looking (some are as colorful as peacocks), are impossible to cook unless they are out of their water and into your pan in less than an hour.

The slipper (Scyllarides latus) is from the Mediterranean and eastern Atlantic and is bigger than the Indo-Pacific bay lobster (Thenus orientalis), which in Australia is called a “bug,” as in Moreton Bay bug or, in the south of Australia, the Balmain bug (a slightly different species).

I prefer the Moreton Bay, but they are both the origin of the ubiquitous “lobster tail” in America and, quite frankly, are a waste of time when frozen. When fresh and cooked gently, they are a dream.

This preparation is for lobster taken out of the shell and reheated, a method that allows you prepare the dish partially in advance.

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Ingredients

  • 4 -pound slipper lobsters, cooked (Method 1), and shelled, juices saved
  • 8 large fresh oysters, shucked, juices saved
  • ½ cup heavy cream
  • 2 tablespoons cold butter, cut in 4 pieces
  • 2 tablespoons sevruga caviar

Method

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Simmer the oysters in their juices and the lobster juices for 5 minutes. Puree the cooked oysters in a food processor very gently for a minute and then put the puree through a fine nylon sieve. Lightly butter (1 tablespoon) a shallow ovenproof gratin dish, and arrange the lobster meat in one layer in the dish.

Put the oyster puree in a nonreactive pan and heat without boiling. Stir in the cream. Remove the pan from the heat and whisk in the butter. Pour over the lobster and heat in the oven for 5 minutes. Take the gratin dish out of the oven and let it cool for a minute. Sprinkle the caviar over the lobster, and serve.

Variation

You could heat the lobster meat in its juices in the gratin dish, spoon a cup of oyster hollandaise over the lobster, and put the dish under the broiler for 2 minutes to slightly brown the top of the sauce.

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