Maine Lobster Roll with Whole Lobsters

  • Level: Intermediate
  • Total: 40 min
  • Active: 30 min
  • Yield: 6 servings
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Six 1 1/4-pound Maine lobsters

1 cup plus 1 teaspoon salt 

6 tablespoons butter 

6 New England-style hot dog buns 

1 cup mayonnaise

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

2 ounces lemon juice 

6 leaves romaine lettuce

6 lemon wedges, for serving


  1. Prepared a large ice bath. Fill a high-sided pot with a lid with 3 gallons water, then mix in 1 cup of the salt and bring to a rolling boil.
  2. Place the lobsters in the boiling water and cover the pot with the lid. Cook the lobsters for 8 minutes, and then remove them from the water and cool down the lobsters in the prepared ice bath.
  3. To remove the meat, pull the tail off of the body and break off the rear tail fins. Pull the tail meat out of the body-end of the tail using a fork. (The tail meat may not be totally opaque white like the claw meat will be. That is OK, it is properly cooked and in order for the tail to be tender it needs to be slightly less cooked than the claw meat). Cut the lobster tail into large chunks.
  4. Next, pull the bottom part of each claw directly down detaching it from the claw; if done correctly this will remove the cartilage from the claws. Then crack the claws and remove the meat. To remove the knuckle pieces, separate the sections and use a lobster pick to remove the pieces. Finally, remove the legs and line them up with the claws facing you. Cover with plastic wrap and use a rolling pin to push the leg meat out starting at the claws and rolling away from you. Repeat for the remaining lobsters.
  5. Heat a griddle or saute pan over high heat until it begins to smoke and then turn the heat down to medium-high.
  6. Spread some butter on both sides of each hot dog bun. Toast the buns on the hot griddle until golden brown on both sides, about 1 minute per side. Once toasted, remove from the heat and split the buns open, and then hold for plating.
  7. In a bowl, combine the lobster, mayonnaise, remaining teaspoon of salt, the pepper and lemon juice, and gently mix to coat the lobster but not break up the meat.
  8. To plate the lobster roll, place one piece of the hot dog bun on the plate with a lettuce leaf on top. Spoon 4 1/2 ounces of lobster salad on top of the lettuce leaf and then top with the other side of the hot dog roll. Repeat for the remaining rolls, and serve each with a lemon wedge.
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