The enticement of steamed lobster tails is hard to resist. It is a delicacy loved by many and is an easy dish to prepare. The question in mind probably is how to steam lobster tails.
First of all, you should know about the lobsters you want to cook. There are cold water and warm water tails according to their fishing environment. Why should you know this? Well, cold water tails tend to be more soft and juicy, unlike warm water. Also, cold water tails contract less when cooking. It’s usually best when you use live or frozen lobsters.
What else you should note is that, for a fresh tail, it will have a greenish color, and upon cooking, it will change to bright red.
Steaming is a friendlier cooking technique that produces a relatively softer, mouthwatering tail meat. It preserves some bit of flavor and does save on time. Here, learn a few tips.
How to Cut a Lobster Tail
Assuming you have a live lobster, use a knife to cut through its brain on a chopping board. Split it down its center, up to a particular middle level, not that close to the tail. But if you only have the lobster tail, you are set to prepare it for cutting.
When cutting a lobster tail, otherwise known as butterflying, it means to chop the carapace through its meat. You will need a kitchen shears or scissors for this task.
1. Rinse the lobster tails thoroughly clean.
2. Insert the kitchen shears at the center of the lobster and cut down toward the end of the tail. Firstly, cut through the top shell from the top’s tail, not through the meat that is inside.
3. Grab the lobster’s tail in both of your hands and extend the shell outward and apart from you, exposing the meat. Get rid of the digestive tract that is along with the tail meat. It’s a blackish vein. Then rinse it with water. However, removing it is not much necessary as some people eat it.
How to Steam Frozen Lobster Tail
If you want your lobster tail to stay fresh, then it at least needs to be kept in a refrigerator. When storing for more than 72 hours, lobster tails need to be wrapped up tightly in wax paper or tin foil paper and kept in a Ziploc bag in the freezer. Frozen lobster tails retain flavor and texture when you defrost them. Now once you are ready to steam them, ensure they fully thaw for a couple of hours in the refrigerator before preparation. Then they are prepared to be cooked.
1. Wash the thawed lobster tails and pat dry.
2. Add about 1-2 inches of water into a pot. Place your steamer basket inside and boil the water.
3. Put the tails in the steamer basket, with the shell side down. The shell is essential in protecting the meat from the extreme heat of the steam.
4. Cover with a tight-fitting lid and steam for 5-10 minutes or until the tails turn opaque.
5. Serve the tails with some lemon juice, pepper or butter if you wish.
Always be careful not to overcook the lobster tails. Unless they are the large tails, they will not cook for long. The method is convenient for the perfect, tender, and delicious tail.
How to Steam Lobster Tail in a Rice Cooker
This method still applies to a thawed tail that was once frozen. Don’t restrict yourself that only the first method was only for the frozen type. No!
1. Place the lobster tail in the rice cooker steamer pot.
2. Add a couple of inches of water over it.
3. Cover the rice cooker with a lid and steam for 6-10 minutes or until the tail meat turns to a bright red color. Use a knife to pierce through the flesh – it should be firm, white, and opaque. For the tomalley (a substance that fills the lobster’s cavity) will be greenish-yellow in case you hadn’t removed it.
4. Remove and serve immediately.
How to Steam Lobster Tails in Oven
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees-400 degrees Fahrenheit. (180 degrees-200 degrees Celsius).
2. Place the cut lobster tails in a baking sheet and brush them with garlic and butter.
3. Add a little water into the baking sheet. (To enhance steaming).
4. Cover it with a piece of heavy-duty aluminum foil.
5. Bake the lobster tails for 15-20 minutes, but this cooking time varies according to the tail sizes or the number of tails you’re steaming at once. Occasionally, check them to avoid scorching. Make sure not to overcook them so that they don’t get tough and chewy.
6. When the lobster tails are ready – firm white meat and a red shell remove from the oven and serve with lemon juice or melted butter if desired. Enjoy!
When the lobster tails are somehow translucent, it only means they are not ready, so steam-bake them once more for a few minutes until the tail meat gets fully cooked.
Steaming is a convenient way of preparing lobster tails. If frozen, they must be thawed fully before cooking. When butterflying the tail meat, you cut through the hardtop carapace and pull the flesh such that it lies on top. Then you can season with garnishes of your preference and steam lobster tails while the shell lies down in the cooking apparatus.
Lobster tail meat has this excellent taste that one may find it hard to resist – whether served at a restaurant or homemade. So when you’re bored at home, get busy and try this new recipe since it is easy to make. When fully cooked, they have this beautiful orange color. They would pair with some steak and lemon wedges, for that acid taste. Ensure you don’t overcook them as they may get this unpleasant texture destroying your delicacy. With that, you can enjoy your meal.