Lookiing for the best place to buy live lobster for a boil in Newport Rhode, Island. My son is getting married there in Sept. Is this a good month for lobster? Plus any hints for steaming lobster and sides...This will be my first attempt and doing this...Thank-You
Go to Galilee for the seafood. You can buy lobsters off the boats near the Great Island bridge. The rest - clams, mussels, shrimp and whatever can be bought at one of the seafood stores there. Handrigans' comes to mind. I checked pictures of a boil done by a friend at his son's graduation - they added king crab and crawfish. I'm a shrimp snob - only gulf shrimp are good enough, but you pay a premium.
This isn't comprehensive - just some highlights. I think the coolest way to do a boil is in a huge pot - 10+ gallons and a fish fryer. For larger quantities, you want serious heat. You might check renting a setup.
Stagger adding the ingredients - start with whole small red potatoes, a couple different kinds of sausages, and half onions and spices. Add some white wine, diced red onions, chopped parsley and garlic to make a nice coating. As the potatoes start soften, add corn (may be past prime at that point). Add the lobsters. Let the boil come back up for a couple of minutes, and add the rest of the shellfish. Shellfish only need to boil for a few minutes.
This is an outside thing. No need to go into the house. Serve on some portable tables covered with plastic sheets. Dump or shovel the contents onto 1-2 tables, and people can just stand along the sides and pick what they want either onto plates to sit down at another table, or right there.
Do it outside. Cleanup entails rolling the plastic into the trash and scooping up the leftovers for another day. Hose the place down and you're all set.
I prefer the steam method as well. Boiling sacrifices flavor and the meat's not as tender. Layer some seaweed on the bottom if possible for great added flavor, otherwise use sea salt. Add a few pepper corns, bayleaf, and a little white wine. Lobsters, steamers, sausage/linguica, corn, and small red bliss all go in the pan at once. Cook for 15 minutes for two pounders, longer if they are larger. Personally, I wouldn't get anything smaller, especially in September when they are usually soft shells.
I can't give specifics on where to buy. Lobster at this time of the year will all be soft shell. They molt in mid summer. They are easier to eat but you have a smaller meat to shell ratio. Chix or lobsters upto 1 1/4 pounds will have very little meat other than the tail. Some claim the soft shell meat is sweeter. Personally freshness has the most do do with the sweetness.
Also lobster boil is kind of misnomer. You want to steam them. I use a large pot, with an inch of water for 2 or 3 1 1/2 to 1 3/4 lb lobsters. Use seawater if you can otherwise alt water with kosher or sea salt. 15 minutes at the mose in the pot. I find a propane fired turkey frier works great for steaming the lobster. Indeed mine has never seen a turkey.
Sides? My favs are all still corn on the cob. ( will still be in season in New England) and a simple rice pilaf. For festive occasions I often start with a big vat of steamers.
If your party is large make arrangements for the lobsters ahead of time and try to get nearly all the same size to make steaming easier. In the time it takes to cook a 2lb'r your 1 1/4 will be overdone and tough.