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Lobster Cheesecake

I'm about to try a recipe I got ages ago from a Providence (R.I.) Journal article on the Hanson's Landing restaurant. It was a very popular signature dish, a lobster cheesecake, apparently adapted from an Emeril recipe. Well, here I am with two pounds of lobster meat, and I start mixing the crust ingredients: and it is wrong, wrong. Recipe calls for 2 cups of flour, ONE POUND of butter!, and one cup of pineapple juice to yield a "firm dough, barely sticky to the touch". Against my better judgement, I tried mixing the ingredients, and ended up with a batter (not a dough) that is more like a frosting than pastry dough.

Any suggestions? I tried calling the restaurant, but it has changed hands and they no longer do the dish. Gulp.

If all else fails, I did find the Emeril recipe on line with a breadcrumb crust -- but the restaurant reviews I also found raved about the crisp crust, so I'd love to do it right if I can!

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  1. This is unfortunately what I would expect from any recipe with an Emeril pedigree.

    1. There is a God. Call me an old-timer but lobster should be kept in pristine condition through the lips. i shudder whenever i see recipes like this (even if certified by Emeril) and all those foo foo flavored creme brulees (lavender? blah!!). sorry, but the most that should be done to lobster is drawn butter, or in a lightly mayo certified lobster roll.

      2 Replies
      1. re: jfood

        Exactly! What in the world would pineapple and lobster have in common?

        1. re: jfood

          Just the thought of cheese and lobster makes me blanche - let alone the pineapple juice.

          Am editing my post - initial response, though exactly that, is churlish and not helpful.

          So - I would suggest just serving the lobster with a lovely tarragon mayonnaise or something of the like (not a butter fan) - and skip the cheesecake thing. I will dig out a good recipe from Balthazar cookbook if you like.

        2. for a good savory cheesecake crust, whiz Trader Joe's stonegound (fritos type) corn chips, a bit of stale cornbread, a touch of toasted ground comino and chili pdr, pepper, in the processor and bind with some melted butter. Press into the quiche or cheescake mold, and bake 10-15 min. Cool and fill with savory cheesecake mixture. Bake in a water bath till lightly set and let cool in oven with door ajar.

          The cheesecake I make is Chipotle/white cheddar/smoked salmon.

          Don't eat lobster, so can't make a judgement as to whether it would work. It's pretty mild, isn't it?

          1. Gee, what a helpful bunch of chowhounds (not!). I am not a baker, but do you think they meant 1 cup of butter or one stick? The cup of juice is throwing me, though. Most pastry recipes call for 1 to 1 1/2 c. flour and 1/2 c. butter/shortening and 3 - 10 T. of liquid. So 1 c. sounds like a LOT - even w/ 2 c. of flour.

            Also, I don't see anything wrong with the basic idea of lobster cheesecake. I love the idea of lobster pot pie and don't think that a savory cheesecake is all that odd. I think cream cheese goes very well with seafood. It adds a wonderful creaminess to the dishes without masking the natural flavor of the seafood. So don't be discouraged and let us know how it turns out. Worse comes to worse - make it crustless!

            1 Reply
            1. re: kim shook

              I feel your pain, when it comes to Food Network chefs you are more than likely going to get some criticism rather than a plethora of help. I am thinking you should stick to the proportion of butter/flour and gradually just enough juice until the crust comes together. I am thinking that the pineapple juice might be playing the same role as vinegar that I have seen added to tart crusts. If all else fails, you might want to scrap the crust recipe and double a crust recipe for a savory tart. Sometimes sticking with a recipe you are comfortable with is easier than getting frustrated over a new one.

            2. How about 2 cups flour 1 CUP butter and 1/4 cup pineapple juice? This works for me except I use water rather than the juice.... needs a little salt too. I'm intrigued, let us know how it turns out!

              1. I just read this, and found this recipe. If it's too late sorry, but don't know if it's the exact one you are looking for.

                Emeril's Lobster Cheesecake
                posted by Gail1935 12-03-101 9:00 AM

                Emeril's Lobster Cheesecake
                Recipe courtesy Emeril Lagasse 1999

                1 cup freshly grated Parmesan
                1 cup bread crumbs
                1/2 cup melted unsalted butter
                1 tablespoon olive oil
                1 cup chopped onions
                1/2 cup chopped yellow bell peppers
                1/2 cup chopped red bell peppers
                2 teaspoons salt
                1 teaspoon black pepper
                1 3/4 pounds cream cheese, at room temperature
                4 large eggs
                1/2 cup heavy cream
                1 cup grated smoked Gouda
                1 pound (about 2 cups) cooked lobster meat, roughly chopped
                1/2 cup chopped parsley
                2 cups crhme friche
                2 hard boiled eggs, finely chopped
                1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh parsley leaves
                1/4 cup small diced red onions
                7 ounces osetra caviar

                Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

                In a mixing bowl, combine the Parmesan, bread crumbs and butter, blend thoroughly. Press the mixture into the bottom of a 9-inch springform pan.

                In a large saute pan, heat the olive oil. When the oil is hot, add the onions and the peppers. Season with salt and pepper. Sauti for 2 minutes, remove from the heat.

                Using an electric mixer, beat the cream cheese until smooth. With the machine running, add the eggs, one at a time, until incorporated. Beat in the cream, Gouda and sautied vegetables until fully incorporated, about 2 minutes. Fold in the lobster meat and the parsley. Pour the filling into the prepared crust and bake until firm, about 1 hour.

                Remove from the oven and allow to cool to room temperature. If you refrigerate the cake before serving, allow to come to room temperature before serving.

                To serve, cut the cake into wedges with a warm knife. Serve each wedge with the Crhme Fraiche, traditional garnishes, and caviar.

                Yield: 12 to 16 servings
                Prep Time: 30 minutes
                Cook Time: 40 minutes

                1. Sounds terrific to me, I have never heard of savory cheesecake, going to "google" it and learn more.
                  This might be too late but could you just make a regular crust with flour, egg and water?

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: Jfields

                    Jfields, here is a great savory cheesecake recipe: http://recipecircus.com/recipes/Kimbe.... Most of them I have seen are basically a modern twist on the old cheeseball - some are wonderful!

                    1. re: kim shook

                      Thanks I found it and if I feel adventurous I will try it.

                  2. Hounds, thanks for the encouragement. I actually shared the bias of early respondents -- not an Emeril fan, and love clean steamed lobster, not even butter-- but the raves for this restaurant item were so strong, I was intrigued....

                    And thank you, intrepid chefs daring enough to pursue the unorthodox recipe issue!

                    Well, I looked at the Emeril version and decided to wimp out and use his breadcrumbs/parm/butter crust. I also adjusted the recipe to reduce the cheese slightly. The result was quite a conversation piece at a potluck of foodies (centerpiece was brisket smoked for 8 hours over hickory)-- well received, a couple requests for recipe-- but frankly, I don't think I'd do it again. An awful lot of fuss, very rich, and yes, I do like my simple plain lobster best of all. If I were tempted to do it again, I would try a pate brisee flour and butter crust, I think the emeril thing is over the top with richness.

                    There were enough interested folks that I felt I owe it to post the recipe. You'll see it similar to the Emeril deal, but I think the adaptations are improvements. This version also reduces cheese quantity. Note: made in a 10 inch springform pan, this serves a lot of folks, too rich for large slices. You might want to scale back the size.

                    Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

                    MAKE CRUST: Chef's choice. I'd suggest a pate brisee from any basic cookbook. Press into a 10" springform pan, don't worry if it only comes about halfway up the sides, adds to the finished look.

                    1/2 cup unsalted butter
                    1 1/2 pounds cream cheese (3 8oz boxes)
                    4 large eggs, separated
                    1/2 cup heavy cream
                    1/2 cup aged Gouda cheese, shredded
                    1/2 cup parmigiana regianno cheese, grated
                    2 teaspoons salt
                    12 turns freshly ground black pepper
                    1 cup green onion, minced
                    1/2 cup minced green pepper
                    1/2 cup minced red pepper
                    1 cup fresh breadcrumbs
                    2 cups freshly picked lobster meat in big chunks

                    In an electric mixer, beat together softened butter and cream cheese until smooth. Add egg yolks one at a time, continue betingnuntil thick and frothy. Add cream and cheeses, then salt, pepper, minced vegetables, and when well combined, add breadcrumbs.

                    Using a spatula, stir in chunks of lobster meat.

                    In a separate bowl, beat egg whites into soft peaks, gently fold into the lobster cheese mixture with a spatula until fully incorporated. Gently turn the mixture into the pastry crust in the springform pan, and level off the top with a spatula. Cut a piece of waxed paper to size (trace bottom of pan), butter well and play it over the filling, butter side down.

                    Bake for 35 minutes, then rotate pan and bake for another 30 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.
                    Top will be crusty brown.

                    Cool to room temperature before serving. Can make a day ahead, store in fridge, and on serving day reheat for 5-10 minutes in 350 degree oven until slightly warmed,

                    Serve slices on a bed of mesclun with thinly sliced garnish of vidalia onions and ripe tomatoes.