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Making a saffron risotto more exciting.post #1 of 299/17/08 at 7:28amThread StarterPlan on cooking NRatched a nice dinner tonight, we went out last night, and she was torn between two dishes...so I decided to make the one she didn't order. Butter poached lobster tail with saffron risotto. fairly straight forward, but i wanted to put some color in the risotto. googling around, i didn't find many ideas. what else can i put in the risotto to make it a little more colorful. fava beans? green beans? what would go well.post #2 of 299/17/08 at 8:02amThread Starterpost #3 of 299/17/08 at 8:59amSeparately saute or steam a few vegetables that go well with lobster, and add them at the assembly stage, after the risotto and lobster are cooked. Then, depending on the nature of the garnish, it can be sprinkled or mounded. Some suggestions for mounding are arugula, radicchio, spinach, chard and leek. Go carefully with choices and amounts or you'll blow out the saffron.
A better idea is a few frozen peas, and/or some chopped garlic chive, with a dusting of paprika or chipotle, and leaving it at that.
Green beans and fava beans are both really bad ideas. Let the food speak for itself.
BDLpost #4 of 299/17/08 at 9:01ampost #5 of 299/17/08 at 9:02amThread Starterpost #6 of 299/17/08 at 9:05amThread StarterNope...that's why I'm here!! haha. I've gotten good at making risotto, so i'll just throw some saffron and parm, reggiano in at the end...and then I planned on just butter poaching the lobster, but i've never done that before......i'm assuming its as easy as i'm assuming? butter in a small saucepan, to above 160 but under 190 de-shelled lobster tail for about 5-7 minutes?post #7 of 299/17/08 at 10:11amWhat color are you trying to make the risotto? For green you could add a parsley pesto near the end of cooking, or for pink you could try throwing a beet into the broth though I don't know if that pairs well with lobster. We are awaiting colorful pictures.
Are you using fresh or frozen lobster?post #8 of 299/17/08 at 10:43amThread Starterpost #9 of 299/17/08 at 10:52amYes, indeedy-do.
The mounding referred to leeks, spinach etc. Two ways to do it. You could either make a mount of leeks (for instance) in the center of the plate, and spoon the risotto around it -- or you could fill the plate with risotto, and start spooning leeks in one place until you had a volcano of leeks rising out of the sea of risotto. Sounds like you're doing that with the lobster -- however, putting the lobster on top of mounded leek in a sea of saffron-risotto sounds good to me.
1. Steam, poach or boil the lobsters in your usual way, but for about half the time. You want it cooked just enough to get the meat out of the tails. That is, the shells should be fully cooked, and the meat can be raw in the center. Shells turn color -- Remove the lobster. Cover the pot, and turn the heat off.
2. Allow the lobsters to cool a few minutes, so you can handle it without destroying your hands. Break the claws off the body, and return the claws to the pot to steep for an additional five minutes. Remove and allow to cool with the tail.
3. When the lobster is cool enough to handle comfortably, about ten minutes, remove all the meat from the tails and claws. Keep the claw meat in one piece. Reserve the coral, if any. Reserve the tomalley for another purpose.
4. Slice the tail into medallion, cover the tail meat and claw meat with cling wrap and refrigerate if there's going to be a long period before poaching.
5. Melt a ton of butter at low heat. The pan should be just large enough to hold the lobster in a single layer. There should be enough butter to fully cover the lobster. I suggest adding a tsp or two of best vanilla extract to the butter.
6. Add the lobster to the butter, cover, and poach at low heat until the lobster is fully cooked -- about 7 or 8 minutes (depending on the size of the pieces).
(Lucky) 7. Remove the lobster, drain and plate. Garnish the lobster with the reserved coral.
Hope this helps,
Added on edit:
A. I can see what you like about the picture. But if you look closely you can see the risotto is gooey. Now imagine a bite of lobster with a green bean or a fava bean on the fork. It's really not working for me at all. But to each their own.
B. Tails, eh? Alla time same same, except for the obsessiveness with the claws and no [whimper] coral.
C. Speaking of coral, you may consider some sort of caviar garnish. I know you're coming to fish slowly, so tabiko might do it. Personally, I'd go American Paddlefish or a good, fresh Salmon roe -- but that might be pushing it for you guys.
Still BDLpost #10 of 299/17/08 at 11:23ampost #11 of 299/17/08 at 11:25ampost #12 of 299/17/08 at 11:26ampost #13 of 299/17/08 at 11:34amthere is a venetian risotto called "risi e bisi" - rice and peas (venetian dialect). It might be just what you're looking for, in terms of color. I haven't eaten lobster since i lived in boston, so long ago... so i can;t vouch for the combination of flavors, but i can tell you for sure, i would not want to eat a lobster with pieces of rice stuck to it. Bla.
Risotto is actually served as a first course, separate, like pasta. I have no problem with it on the same dish, as i usually eat it myself, but the lobster on top- i don;t like it. Only if you did a seafood risotto, perhaps (PERHAPS). But then i don;t like my food all mixed together anyway. I like the separate tastes. My husband almost always mixes everything together. all a question of taste."Siduri said, 'Gilgamesh, where are you roaming? You will never find the eternal life that you seek...Savour your food, make each of your days a delight, ... let music and dancing fill your house, love the child who holds you by the hand and give your wife pleasure in your embrace.'""Siduri said, 'Gilgamesh, where are you roaming? You will never find the eternal life that you seek...Savour your food, make each of your days a delight, ... let music and dancing fill your house, love the child who holds you by the hand and give your wife pleasure in your embrace.'"post #14 of 299/17/08 at 11:37amYour poach plan sounds okay. Just make sure the lobster is completely covered. Poaching works better in a single layer -- which has to do with the physics of immersion conduction. But you'll be okay -- lobster is fairly robust.
Lobster tails are fine. If they're raw when you buy them, you'll have to blanch them off just like whole, live lobsters. If they're already red, fuhgeddabouddid.
I'm not sure if you saw it in my previous post, but the recommendation to use vanilla in the butter poach is a good one. Nudge, nudge, elbow. Saffron/vanilla/lobster is one of those natural combinations which has only recently been "discovered," and is still fairly infra-dig. There's a chance NRatched will be impressed with your creativity. Don't tell her where you got it.
Not sure about Abe's diagnosis of green pepper -- could be thin asparagus, could be a lot of things. Like I said, the virtual taste of lobster and fava on my virtual palate leaves me cold. Not only an unhappy combination, it devalues rather than enhances the lobster. Lobster should be used as a celebration, not a supporting component in a bean dish.
Abe is right about how to use the saffron. Saffron needs time to bloom, anyway. You can't just throw it in at the end.
Risi bisi with lobster is exactly what was spinning through that cold, lonely, cobwebbed vacuum I call my brain.
Living where you do, with access to good Eastern European markets, you have great salmon caviar at reasonable prices. Salmon roe is unabashedly fish -- although fresh roe isn't as salty-fishy or sticky as preserved. American paddlefish caviar is excellent as well -- just make sure you buy natural, undyed or the dye will run.
The earlier recommendation for tabiko should have been more complete and for wasabi tabiko -- but you'd like either. Wasabi tabiko has a spicy hot mustard/horseradish quality which would enhance the lobster, and is also green. Natural colored is rosy, and very mild. Either is far more a texture than a taste. Use as a garnish, and use sparingly. You can try the leftover on buttered toast for tomorrow's breakfast. Linda, who is even more suspicious of fish than you, likes it a lot.
BDLpost #15 of 299/17/08 at 12:06pmThread Starterpost #16 of 299/17/08 at 12:10pmso....use saffron when im heating up the stock for the risotto? no problem.
and yeah i was going to add some vanilla.....actually thats how it was on the menu at the restaurant last night as well.
>>Good tip! That should go well with chardonnaypost #17 of 299/17/08 at 12:14pmThread StarterP.S.
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ok, on my way to pick up some peas and lobster tails.
this is my first time using the homemade stock i made as well.post #18 of 299/17/08 at 12:18pmpost #19 of 299/17/08 at 4:47pmThread Starterain't you paying attention boy? :p
I used the chicken stock for the risotto, pictures in about 10 minutes (they are uploading)post #20 of 299/17/08 at 5:01pmpost #21 of 299/17/08 at 5:03pmThread Starterpost #22 of 299/17/08 at 5:08pmpost #23 of 299/17/08 at 5:17pmThread Starterpost #24 of 299/17/08 at 5:20pmpost #25 of 299/17/08 at 5:32pmThread Startercame out great.
the risotto came out excellent with the homemade stock and saffron!! I'm a pretty good risotto maker now I think.
paired it with...
so...how did she like it?
I took your advice and steeped the saffron (a pinch) in the simmering stock.
P.S. I got my new knife! see equipment forums in a few minutes.post #26 of 299/17/08 at 6:24pmpost #27 of 299/18/08 at 5:58amHmmm, gotta have risotto now! I've been thinking about making this great recipe I found on jamieoliver.com that is made with a basic risotto recipe, plus apples, blue cheese, and walnuts. Yey!
About lobster - it ain't seafood.... it's steak of the sea.post #28 of 299/18/08 at 6:17amDepends who you talk to, some people call it the cochroach of the sea.
There was an Indian tribe that used lobsters only for fertilizer:
"From poverty food and field fertilizer to a high priced, sought after delicacy, the history of the lobster spans hundreds of years as well as social classes."post #29 of 299/18/08 at 3:02pmSame thing could be said for lots of foods. If you're interested in that sort of thing you may want to read about the history of salted cod. For hundreds of years it used to be dirt cheap. Try buying it now - lobster may be cheaper haha.
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