Since our visit to Ikoyi in October, we had been craving a properly made lobster roll. A buttery warm brioche topped with sous vide lobster seasoned with mayo, herbs and some crunchy celery.
We have selected the best recipes we know for each component. Thomas Keller’s Ad hoc at home lobster roll, Modernist Bread’s incredibly easy to make Sablée Brioche and Serious Eats’ Two-Minute Mayonnaise. The most labor-intensive part of this recipe is removing the meat from the lobster. Apart from that, it’s a rather straightforward process. To make the occasion even more special, we’ve paired the dish with Larmandier-Bernier Terres de Vertus (a review of which will be published soon). Our lobster comes from Pesky Fish.
Lobster rollsCourse: MainCuisine: French, American, ModernDifficulty: Medium
The recipe for mayonnaise was adapted from J. Kenji Lopez-Alt from Serious Eats, the Lobster mixture was from Thomas Keller and the brioche recipe from Modernist Cuisine.
290g high-gluten bread flour (such as Canadian or Manitoba white flour)
145g cold unsalted butter, cut into small cubes
45g caster sugar
4.7g instant yeast
65g whole milk, cold
Egg wash (1 egg yolk, 1tbsp milk and pinch of salt)
- The immersion blender mayonnaise
1 large eggs
1tbsp lemon juice
1tsp Dijon mustard
1 small garlic clove, minced
125ml rapeseed oil
- Cooking the lobster
- Lobster Mixture
Around 200g cooked lobster
2-3tbsp mayonnaise (from the recipe above)
1tbsp minced red onion
1tbsp celery, peeled and finely chopped
1tsp tarragon, finely chopped
1tsp chives, finely chopped
1tsp flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped
½ lime juice
Salt and black pepper
Brioche (from the recipe above)
- Using a food processor, combine all the dry ingredients and the cold butter and pulse until a sandy mixture is obtained.
- Then pour in the eggs and the milk and process until homogeneous.
- Transfer the dough onto a lightly floured working surface and shape it into a ball. Do not overwork it. Let the dough rest in a bowl, covered with cling film or a cloth, for 2.5h at room temperature.
- Then transfer the dough to the fridge and refrigerate for 12h.
- Prepare a lightly floured surface, divide the dough into 6 balls and let them rest for 10min.
- Shape the balls into the buns by rolling the balls into a cylindrically oblong form.
- Arrange the balls on a baking tray, brush the buns with egg wash.
- Carefully cover the tray with greased cling film. Proof for 3 to 4h at 21C.
- Preheat the oven to 205C.
- Remove the cling film and place the buns in the oven. Bake for 10min, then turn the tray around. Reduce the temperature to 190C and bake for 10min more.
- Remove the buns from the oven and let them cool on a wire rack.
- These proportions yield much more than you need, however we find it very hard to decrease the quantity and still make it work. We recommend to stick to the proportions, and the leftovers can be stored in a sealed container in the fridge. The container, which you are going to use, must be just larger than the head of your blender. That way the oil will gradually be emulsified into the other ingredients.
- Put all the ingredients in the tube-shape container, place the immersion blender at the bottom of the cup and pulse on high speed.
- Don’t move the head of the blender, just pulse it gradually until the ingredients combine. Season with salt to taste at the end.
- Cooking the lobster
- Dispatch the lobster in the most humane way possible. Separate the claws from the body.
- In a large pot, bring to boil water and place the body of lobster for 1min. Remove and set aside. Increase the heat and when the water is boiling again, add the claws for 4min. This will cook the external layers of meat and make it easier to extract from the shell.
- Carefully remove the meat from the tail and the claws. If unclear how to do so we recommend watching any tutorials online.
- Vacuum seal the claws and tail in separate sous vide bags adding a small knob of butter in each.
- Sous vide the tail at 55C for 30min and reserve refrigerated in the bag.
- Then proceed to cook the claws at 60C and reserve.
- Lobster mixture
- Start by chopping the celery stick and herbs. Place them in a mixing bowl, add the minced red onion and the mayonnaise and mix.
- Cut lobster meat into 2cm pieces and add to the other ingredients. Add lime juice and season to taste with salt and pepper.
- Cut the brioche lengthwise in half (but not fully). Ideally it should be warm so that it retains its flexibility when the filling is added. If you’d like, cut the brioche fully and toast it cut side down on a pan at medium heat.
- Place 2 small leaves of gem lettuce inside the brioche to protect the brioche from getting soggy with the lobster mixture. Finally, add a generous amount of lobster mixture.