Some people enjoy the ritual of shelling a lobster themselves, but for those who really love lobster meat and eat it often, the novelty quickly fades. If you’re cooking lobster for family and friends who have already had the chance to try shelling lobster, they’ll appreciate having all the hard work done for them in advance.
Preparing Shelled Meat for a Group
Whether you’re going to serve a lobster dinner and want the meat ready to go for your guests, or are cooking a dish that requires lobster meat, it will help immensely if you know how to do it quickly and correctly.
Shelling Your Own
If you’re planning to attend a dinner where you’ll be eating lobster, you may benefit from this basic overview on how to shell a lobster. You just never know when you might be expected to shell your own!
Follow these 3 easy steps to perfectly shelled lobster, so that you’ll look like an expert instead of a joke –if all else fails, don’t forget that you can always order Maine lobster tails delivered online from a specialty lobster delivery service.
Cooking Your Lobster Properly
If you haven’t cooked your lobster properly, not only will it be difficult to shell, but the task could become futile if your meat is inedible. For absolute freshness, order your lobster live and leave it intact as you plunge it into boiling salted water or court bullion. As a general rule of thumb, you should add a tablespoon of salt for every quart of water. If you aren’t familiar with the process, it’s definitely worth looking up a step-by-step recipe.
Removing the Tail Meat
Assuming that you’ve cooked your lobster properly – or someone else has – your first step will be to address one of the lobster’s most succulent parts: the tail! You should start by removing the tail from the rest of the body by breaking it where the tail and body meet. Next, turn the lobster upside down and cut into the shell along each side of the tail. Once you’ve discarded the shell membrane, you can pull the tail meat out whole while removing the dark vein that runs through the tail.
Removing the Claw Meat
This is the part where you’ll want to make use of a specialty lobster tool: the lobster cracker! In a pinch, you can also use a metal nutcracker to break open the lobster claws. Crack each claw below the pincer section, while taking care not to damage the meat. Pull the claw meat out from the open base. Next, pull the small pincer away from the main part of the claw, along with the flat, white membrane. The meat from this section should now be easy to remove with a thin utensil.
If you’ve managed to successfully remove the tail and claw meat intact, then you’re well on your way to becoming a lobster connoisseur! Even if everything didn’t go perfectly, you’ll be sure to be an expert soon with minimal practice. Now that you’ve learned the basics, you can move on to accessing the small amount of meat in the main body, along with the delicacy parts: the tomalley and roe!