Summer is officially here and for those along the New England coast, that means lobster roll season — when succulent claw and tail meat is served slathered in warm butter or mixed in cool mayo between the open split top of a toasted bun. Although we live in landlocked Fort Worth, there is still an impressive list of quality lobster rolls available locally, from East Hampton Sandwich Co.’s Maine-style roll to the Connecticut Roll from Cousins Maine Lobster food truck. Those looking to flex their culinary muscles can try these easy recipes at home, which prove that with a quick trip to the seafood counter, sweet and summery seafood rolls can be made anywhere in the country.
Maine Lobster Roll
The Capital Grille
New Englanders know that lobster rolls come in two styles: Maine and Connecticut — and natives of both states are likely to defend their version as best. The Maine Lobster Roll at The Capital Grille is spot-on in style, made with mayonnaise mixed with fresh tarragon, diced celery and a big squeeze of refreshing citrus juice. Look for fresh Maine lobster at the seafood counter for even more authenticity.
Makes 4 rolls
• 1 pound cooked lobster meat, broken
• 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
• 1/4 cup celery, diced 1/4 inch
• 1 tablespoon green peppers, diced 1/8 inch
• 1/4 cup mayonnaise
• 1/4 cup sour cream
• 1 tablespoon freshly chopped parsley
• 1 teaspoon freshly chopped tarragon
• Pinch cayenne pepper
• 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
• 4 split-top hot dog buns
• 2 tablespoons softened butter
1. Sift through the lobster meat, a handful at a time, to remove shell fragments and cartilage. Place meat in stainless mixing bowl.
2. In another mixing bowl, combine lime juice, celery, peppers, mayonnaise, sour cream, herbs, pepper and salt and mix thoroughly. Add lobster meat and gently toss. Keep chilled.
3. When ready to serve, lightly coat sides of hot dog buns with butter and brown lightly in saute pan. When buns are golden brown, gently spoon in lobster mixture and serve immediately.
800 Main St., Fort Worth, 817-348-9200, www.thecapitalgrille.com
Connecticut Lobster Roll
Cousins Maine Lobster
Founded in California by two cousins with Maine roots, Cousins Maine Lobster food truck gained national attention thanks to a business partnership stemming from the hit TV show Shark Tank. Now there is a fleet of Cousins trucks across more than a dozen cities nationwide, including Dallas. The truck makes regular appearances in Fort Worth at Clearfork Food Park and serves both a Maine lobster roll with mayo and a Connecticut version served warm with melted butter and just a simple squeeze of lemon. The latter, featured here, is the most straightforward version of the coastal New England dish.
Makes 1 roll
• 3.2 ounces cooked Maine lobster meat
• 1 6-inch hot dog roll (Country Kitchen brand preferred), toasted
• 1 ounce warm butter
• Squeeze of lemon
In a buttered saute pan, warm the lobster over medium heat for 30 to 45 seconds. Butter each side of toasted roll equally. Lightly open roll and rest meat inside. Top with squeeze of lemon.
East Hampton Sandwich Co.
When East Hampton Sandwich Co. opened its Fort Worth location three years ago, the Dallas-based eatery raised the bar on fast-casual sandwich shops by including a lobster roll on its menu — a fantastic one at that. The Maine-style roll keeps it simple, using only a light aioli, lemon juice, salt, pepper and a dash of Old Bay Seasoning in its recipe.
Makes 1 roll
• 4 1/2 ounces fresh pulled, cooked lobster claw and knuckle meat
• 1 1/2 tablespoons mayonnaise or aioli
• Pinch fresh herbs of choice
• 1 teaspoon lemon zest
• 1 tablespoon lemon juice
• Salt, black pepper and white pepper, to taste
• 1 bun
• Butter, as needed
• Dash Old Bay Seasoning
Combine lobster meat with mayonnaise or aioli, herbs, lemon zest, lemon juice, salt, black and white pepper. Toast bun and butter. Fill with lobster mix and top with a dash of Old Bay Seasoning.
1605 S. University Drive, Fort Worth, 817-887-9928, www.ehsandwich.com
Shrimp Avocado Salad Rolls
Eatzi’s Market & Bakery
Prepared similarly to the classic Maine lobster roll, Eatzi’s version features more economical ingredients — shrimp and avocado — along with a bit of Texas heat from a generous splash of Tabasco sauce. Even more, much of the recipe may be prepped a couple days in advance, making it a go-to for backyard summer gatherings.
Makes 6 rolls
• 6 split-top hot dog buns
• 2 pounds Shrimp Avocado Salad
• 6 tablespoons (or 3/4 stick) butter,
• 6-8 butter lettuce leaves
Butter the flat side of each bun. In a saute pan over medium-high heat, toast the flat sides of the buns until golden brown. Open the buns and line with butter lettuce and stuff with Shrimp Avocado Salad. Serve immediately.
Shrimp Avocado Salad
Makes 2 pounds
• 1 quart water
• 2 tablespoons orange juice
• 2 tablespoons lemon juice
• 1 tablespoon Old Bay Seasoning
• 1 celery stalk, roughly chopped
• 2 teaspoons kosher salt
• 1 1/2 pounds 51-60 raw shrimp,
peeled, deveined and tails off
• 1 large ripe avocado, medium dice
• 3/4 cup Shrimp Salad Dressing (recipe follows)
1. Combine water, juices, seasoning, celery and salt in a stockpot and bring to a boil. Place shrimp in a colander or strainer and add to the boiling pot. Cook for approximately 3 minutes. Remove shrimp, drain and chill. (Will keep for up to two days.)
2. When ready to serve, combine chilled shrimp with diced avocado and Shrimp Salad Dressing and mix well.
Shrimp Salad Dressing
Make 3/4 cup
• 1/4 cup mayonnaise
• 1 tablespoon sour cream
• 1/4 teaspoon cider vinegar
• 1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
• 1/2 teaspoon Tabasco sauce
• 3/4 teaspoon Old Bay Seasoning
• Pinch white pepper
• 1 small red bell pepper, deseeded
and small dice
• 1 celery stalk, small dice
• 3 sprigs parsley, chopped
Combine the mayonnaise, sour cream, vinegar, lemon juice, Tabasco sauce, seasoning and white pepper in a bowl. Whisk until blended. Add the red pepper, celery and parsley. Stir to combine. (Will keep for up to two days.)
1540 S. University Drive, Suite 100, Fort Worth, 817-945-9095, www.eatzis.com