Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Love is in the Air

Surf and Turf
One of the reasons I love cooking is the instant gratification. I love chopping, slicing, dicing, and creating different dishes, then immediately serving them to Curt. I can always judge how much he likes the food because if he really likes it, he'll turn to me and say, "Hun, this is the best meal I've ever had in my life." It's really cute actually.

I made this a while ago, but haven't had the chance to post this recipe until now. It was definitely one of the meals Curt liked the most. For Valentine's Day, I felt like making a surf and turf. I've never cooked lobster tails before, but decided to give it a whirl. For the "turf" part, I got a beautiful ribeye. (Hey, I'm trying to eat less red meat, but it was soooooo good!)

I bought 3 lobster tails from the seafood department at Harris Teeter. Again, I have really no idea what I was doing, but figured the recipes online seem pretty easy, so why not go all out?

(The actual Surf and Turf)

As usual, I needed a side, so I grabbed some asparagus. It's always good with everything. I decided to go without anything too carby like mashed potatoes. I did buy one of those refrigerator loaves of french bread though. All you have to do is open the container, put a few slits in it, spnrinkle some garlic salt on top, then pop it in the oven for a few minutes and you have deliciously soft "homemade" bread!

(You can see the bottoms of the wine glasses we used with dinner haha)

I had asked the fish lady to split the lobster tails in half lengthwise. I guess she didn't understand what I was asking, because she cut them in half the other way... so instead of 6 long halves of lobster, I had some kinda weird looking pieces. When I got home, I cut the halves in half... which, surprisingly, wasn't as complicated as I thought it would be. So I basically had 12 little lobster bites that looked like this:

(Cute little lobster tails)
I found a recipe online for grilled rock lobster tails. Since I don't really know the difference between a rock lobster and any other type of lobster, I figured that I could use the recipe. Here's goes!
Grilled Lobster Tails
* 3 small lobster tails
* 1 tbs lemon juice
*1/4 cup melted butter
* 1/4 cup olive oil
* 1 tsp garlic salt
* 1 tsp paprika
* 1 dash pepper
Mix all of these ingredients into a small bowl and set aside. I made a few changes to make the recipe mine. :) One example: the original recipe called for no butter and 1/2 cup of olive oil. I pulled a page out of Paula Dean's book and added some butter. I just love the rich flavor that butter adds. So I cut the olive oil down by half and added the remainder in melted butter. I had some leftover parsley from another recipe, so I threw that in there too. Here's what it looked like.

(doesn't look that great, but it IS)
The recipe called for the lobster tails to be grilled, but February in Virginia isn't the best grilling weather. I pulled out my trusty grill pan and set that up. It's cast iron and I know I should love it, but I haven't been able to season it so that it's where I want it... oh well... that's another story!

I threw everything on the grill pan at the same time. The lobster tails don't take very long to cook, so I figured I better get the steak started at the same time. I brushed the little buttery sauce on the meat of the lobster and put them face down on the grill pan. For the steak, I just threw on some garlic salt and pepper. I love the natural flavor of a good steak, so I didn't want to ruin it by adding a bunch of stuff to it.

( Just look at those yummy little things!)
There was a lot of the butter sauce stuff, so I just kept brushing it on the lobster tails to make sure they don't dry out and that they retain as much flavor as possible. Once they started turning pink, I knew it was almost time to flip those little bad boys!

( "Red"y to eat)

I only flipped the steak once. I know that for burgers, you aren't supposed to flip them more than once because all of the juices will dry up... or something like that, so I try not to mess with steaks too much. This one looked great though!

( Let's dig in!)
I pulled everything off the grill when it looked like it was ready. Everything looked and smelled great! It looked especially great on the little pie plate that Susan gave me for a Christmas present. I've definitely used that cute little pie plate multiple times already... thanks Susan!

The dinner was amazing and the lobster had a nice delicate flavor. We didn't need to add any melted butter or anything to it. The steak was cooked about medium rare, which is how Curt and I like our steaks.

Here's a close up, so you can see the golden color the lobster turned, thanks to the grill pan and the yummy butter sauce.
Even though I was kind of annoyed at the fish lady for cutting the lobster in half the wrong way, I must say that things turned out well. The little lobster bites were really the perfect size. We could pull them out of the shell and eat them in 1 or 2 bites which could have been tricky otherwise.
The asparagus and bread went really well with it and I don't think either of us had any room for dessert!

Curt ended up finishing all of the lobster. We did have a bit of steak left, but look at it... it was ENORMOUS!!! It was great sliced up and stuck on top of a salad for leftovers.
Overall, my first experience with lobster tails went pretty well! I'll definitely have to try it again soon!

I know it was a good meal because, according to Curt, it was one of the best meals he'd ever had. :)

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