Crustacean butter is used for finishing and adding complexity not only to crustacean sauces but to fish and certain meat sauces as well. It is also useful for last-minute sauces, to which the flavor of crustaceans can be added without starting an américaine-style sauce from scratch.
Crustacean butter is prepared from cooked crustacean shells. Shells with a bright orange color, such as lobster and crayfish, are best. Because crustacean butter takes considerable time to prepare, it is best to save the shells when preparing lobster for salads and other dishes in which the shells are removed and freeze them until needed. However, avoid hard claw shells, which can damage your mixer.
Crustacean butter is valuable in sauce making not only for its flavor, but also for its bright color. By cooking crustacean shells with butter, flavor and color are extracted that would be left behind if the shells were cooked only in stock or other water-based liquids.
Because crustacean butter is intensely flavored, a little goes a long way. It can be prepared in batches and refrigerated or frozen until needed. It keeps in the refrigerator for up to a month and can be frozen almost indefinitely.
|cooked crustacean shells, preferably lobster or crayfish|
Copyright © 2017 by James Peterson. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.