Freezing Lobster Meat...?
We're presently vacationing in Maine where lobsters are inexpensive and plentiful. I'm wondering if there's some way I can cook, or partially cook some lobsters, remove the meat, and freeze it for later use. We've got a very well-equipped kitchen here, including a lobster steamer, and an ice chest for traveling with cold/frozen foods. What's the best way to bring the flavors of DownEast Maine back to PA with me?
The fish market here (very much inland) never has live lobsters, but they always have a few tails in the freezer section. Personally, I don't like to have animals killed especially for my own consumption (i.e., no picking one out of the tank for me... I only eat stuff that would have been killed anyways), so frozen is pretty much the only way I'd eat lobster unless I was in Maine or something where they're boiling them left and right.
So I'm thinking the best way of going about it would to be to steam it and freeze it. Probably not so good for the ol' lobster and clarified butter combo, but you could use the meat in other dishes.
jumping in here on the freezing question. I have some leftover meat (after eating them boiled and in a lobster roll) and would like to make some lobster bisque, but in a week or so. Would the already cooked lobster be ok to freeze, especially if it is going to get pureed in a bisque anyway? thanks
If you can transport them live, that's how to do it. I think if you cooked & froze them, you would be disappointed , since you've been 'spoiled' by fresh ones. The reason they are 'cheap' right now is because they have just molted, so there is less meat filling up their new, larger shells. Squeeze them gently around the middle and you'll feel them give a bit.; you are paying for more shell, less meat.. I thought the lobstermen were still on strike...if not, and you decide to try bringing them back alive, try omiting the middleman and get them fresh off the docks. Come back next July when there are festivals, you won't be dissapointed!
Pack several live (and lively) ones in a cooler with seaweed and cook them for dinner when you get home. You could also cook a few, make lobster salad, and bring that home to eat in the next few days. You could also freeze some tails and claws uncooked (you can boil them alive, but can you decapitate them alive?) and bring them home in a separate cooler. I'm not sure you'd want to partially cook them and then recook the shelled meat later. I think that's too much trauma for such lovely and delicate meat.
"What's the best way to bring the flavors of DownEast Maine back to PA with me?"
In your stomach, muscles, cells, and memory. :)
Lobster doesn't freeze well, and loses a lot of flavor. Now, I could see cooking some up to take with you on the trip home, for a picnic. Just eat it cold... mmmmm lobster....
But for managing to keep it for any length of time, you just can't. Even lobster that's been boiled fresh, well picked, and packed carefully for shipping in cold cans to end up on your shelf at the grocery just loses waaaay too much to be worth it.
If you want the taste of Maine at home, try ordering from one of the millions of places online that will ship fresh, live lobsters to you overnight right from the boat to you. Even -that- isn't quite going to recreate the taste, but it'll be fresher than the ones you get live at the supermarket.
There's a reason it's a luxury food. :)