Lobster rolls are moving out of Maine and New England and they are headed to a city near you in food trucks that compete aggressively for your business every day. Lobster rolls in a food truck? It’s a delicacy that is only gaining momentum and popularity in the food truck rodeo arena.
What makes a good Maine lobster roll? There are three major components to this delicious sandwich that cannot (or shouldn’t) be sacrificed:
Firstly, use the lobster meat from the claws and arms. It is the sweetest meat and it makes a difference. If you cannot get your hands on a live Maine lobster, the next best option is to purchase frozen lobster tails. If you go this route, make sure to thaw the tails properly by placing them in the refrigerator overnight. If you try to thaw it too quickly, it will be rubbery and you will have wasted some hard earned dollars. Take it slow and easy. Please, never ever use canned lobster meat. It is too salty, the texture and size is not right, and it just doesn’t work.
Second, the most widely used and arguably the best bun for a lobster roll is a split topped, flat bottomed bun. No, you may not use a hot dog bun. This particular bun is part of what makes a lobster roll special. The shape and its ability to stand up what makes this bun the best option for a lobster roll. All you have to do is butter it and lightly toast it. This is the easiest part of the preparation, so please don’t mess it up by using a hot dog bun.
Finally, mayo versus whipped salad dressing. People will always argue which of these condiments is the better choice for salads and sandwiches. In this case, the whipped salad dressing seems to reign supreme as the sweetness of the dressing compliments the sweetness of the lobster meat. You use very little dressing in the sandwich, so the condiment flavor will only enhance, but never overpower, the lobster flavor.
Now for the fine art of creating a fabulous lobster roll in your own kitchen
You will need:
- Live or frozen Maine lobster. Preferably claw meat, tail meat will work as well
- Split top, flat bottom buns
- Whipped salad dressing
- Spices to your liking: celery seed, dill weed, salt, and other herbs you enjoy
How to make the best lobster roll in your own kitchen:
- Chop cold meat into bite size chunks
- Mix in whipped salad dressing just to coat lightly
- Sprinkle with preferred herbs and spices
- Toast bun
- Stuff with cold meat
A few alternatives that some people like:
- Some people do like a lot of mayo/salad dressing. If that’s what you like, go for it.
- Adding veggies is a popular choice. Ideal veggies to dice and add to crab meat and mayo/salad dressing: onions, celery, green pepper, green onion, and cucumber. I wouldn’t recommend a tomato (but that’s because I don’t like them).
Summer’s here and time to enjoy a great picnic! While your neighbors grill up hot dogs and hamburgers on the grill, make a batch of lobster rolls and watch out for those envious eyes that will be staring you down.