I am having company this weekend from out of town and am looking for a lobster salad recipe that I could jazz up besides just mayo and celery. If I use mayo could I add Lemon juice to it or would that make the mayo curddle. I was thinking of putting in endive leaves as an app and wanted to have a little more taste than just the mayo but don't know what to add.
I know it's not exactly what you asked, but I wouldn't 'jazz up' a lobster salad - let it be a peaceful and plain part of the meal, and jazz up something else.
Why? For one thing, respect the delicate flavor of lobster - it's easy to overwhelm it, and then you might as well use fake seafood flakes.
Alternatively, you could 'jazz up' its accompaniment - serve a simple lobster salad on something homemade and flavorful, some sort of flavored crisp bread or cracker. Or take those endive leaves you mentioned and make a bed of them, instead of incorporating them.
I'm with Wayne and wouldn't add too many flavors that would overwhelm the lobster. I am not a fan of a heavy mayonnaise dressing for lobster and would thin it with heavy cream and some lemon juice, as well as a little dab of dijon mustard, and add a little minced fresh herb (I think tarragon is ideal here, but use what you like but be judicious with the amount). A little minced celery is fine, but you may also want to consider minced fennel bulb instead (which happens to go with the tarragon). I would also present this on some whole endive leaves instead of incorporating them into the salad -- it will be a very pretty plate.
I love the lobster salad Jasper White (our resident Boston lobster expert) has in his book "Lobster at Home" . It's still classic, but with just a twist. He makes a homemade tarragon mayonnaise with fresh tarragon (I'll post the recipe if you want it), and then per 1 pound of lobster meat (about 5 lbs lobster), you add
1 medium cucumber -peeled, seeded, and finely diced (and drained in a colander for at least 5 minutes)
3 small scallions thinly sliced
1/2 cup of tarragon mayonnaise or regular mayo
Toss together, season with sea salt/kosher salt, and pepper, and cover and chill for at least 30 minutes (best served the same day, but not more than 2 days). Love your idea of serving in endive leaves. This recipe is the only one I make now. I've used Hellman's instead of the homemade mayo and it's still delicious.
Make the salad with whatever you like. My only advice is to cook the lobster (less than 2# I find to be sweeter, though we could have a long thread about this) in boiling salted water, remove the meat and DO NOT REFRIGERATE! If the lobster remain at room temp, they stay tender. I am not saying leave them out overnight, but just have your timing down so when so when you mix everything together the lobsters have not been chilled.
By the way I love a red beet vinaigrette with lobster salad. The earthy taste of the beets is a nice contrast to the sweet lobster flesh. Diced yellow beets spread around for color. Oh, and what about some mache as a nice delicate green? Then you could...
I like to make a light tarragon (chive is also good) mayonnaise. Cut up the lobster into large chunks, arrange it on some butter/bibb lettuce, chunks of avocado, slices of cucumber. If I want a little sweetness, pieces of mango. Drizzle the mayonnaise over the salad right before serving. It should be a mild delicate lettuce...nothing like mesclun or arugula detract from the lobster.
It is a shame to chop up lobster and drown it in too much mayonnaise.
1 1/2 lb lobster, cooked and deshelled
1 large firm (yet ripe) yellow peach
1 firm (yet ripe) Hass avocado
1 stick unsalted butter
1 bunch fresh mint
1 small bunch frisee or mache
kosher salt, freshly ground pepper
1 bottle of distilled white vinegar
take 1/2 of a stick of cold butter and slice into larger pieces. Add five tablespoons of water to a small saucepan and bring to a boil via high heat. Add a few chunks of butter into the water, whisking as you go to emulsify butter into water. Reduce the heat to low. Continue adding the chunks of butter and whisk until thoroughly emulsified. The mixture should have the consistency of a very thick butter sauce.
Butter poach the lobster just to heat it through.
Slice peach and avocado.
Take warm butter poaching liquid and add one tablespoon of the chopped mint into the saucepan. Squeeze a generous amount of fresh lemon juice into sauce. Add fresh pepper. Whisk to mix ingredients. Add salt, pepper or more lemon juice to taste. The lemon juice should add a nice bite, almost like vinaigrette. Serve slightly warm.
Stack peach, lobster, avocado on plate, and drizzle butter sauce over; top with frise.
I'd make a dressing with just olive oil, lemon juice, snipped chive, salt & pepper. Serve the lobster over some mild lettuces (maybe baybe spinach?) tossed together with fresh corn (give it a quick cook, then cut it off the cob) and maybe a little chopped red pepper. Also, a baguette and some super mild smearable (or melted) goat cheese.