Lobster Rolls

Killing lobsters, or any living thing for that matter, is no easy feat and isn’t for the faint of heart. It’s hard to take a life and it does make you respect what’s on your place a lot more. Over at Gilt Taste, Melissa Clark gives you a good primer on what might be the best way to do the dirty deed (hers is well researched!). As I mention above, I also spoke about the trauma of killing a lobster with some lovely people at the Red Hook Lobster Pound, who suggested I freeze the beast 15 minutes prior to cooking. They also gave me one great morsel of information – those sounds you hear coming from the pot? That’s not lobster “screeching” per se, that’s air escaping the shell. Sort of made me feel more at ease with what I’m doing. Taking a life is not easy, I do it with a heavy heart. But you develop a newfound respect for those folks who get our meat to our tables, particularly those who opt for a small-scale, most humane approach. And lastly, a lovely lady by the name of Jacqueliene Church sent me this awesome link about 1- things you didn’t know about lobsters and the nerd that I am wanted to share them with you as well.

For the Mayonnaise Dressing:
1/2 cup mayonnaise (or make your own)
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice, more to taste
1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt, or to taste
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
Pinch Aleppo pepper or smoky paprika

For the Lobster Rolls:
2 (1 1/4 to 1 1/2-pound) cooked lobsters
2 small, celery stalks (close to the center of the bunch) with leaves
4 hot dog rolls, split
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
Sliced scallions, for serving
Celery leaves, for serving
Flaky sea salt, for serving
Hungarian paprika, for serving (optional)


1. Cook the lobsters. Freeze them for 15 minutes before cooking, and then stick them in a large pot with a few inches of boiling water and a steamer. Steam for 15 to 20 minutes, until the lobster shell and flesh turn red and the tomalley – green. Allow the lobsters to cool.

2. Remove the lobster meat from shells and dice into bite-sized chunks. You should have about 2 to 2 1/2 cups of lobster meat. Finely chop the celery stalks, saving the leaves for garnish. Add 1/4 cup of the chopped celery stalks to a bowl with the lobster and fold in the mayo. Season with more salt and lemon, if needed.

3. Preheat the broiler. Place the hot dog rolls on a baking sheet; toast, split side-up, until golden, about 1 minute (be attentive so they do not burn). Brush cut sides with melted butter.

4. To serve, divide lobster mixture among rolls. Top with scallions and celery leaves; drizzle with butter. Add a pinch of paprika and another drizzle of lemon juice, if desired.

Makes 4 or 5 lobster rolls – we were able to get 5 from ours.

© 2023 Olga Massov