Staying warm in the winter easily lends itself to this cozy and comforting Lobster Bisque paired alongside our 2016 Chardonnay, which has a touch of citrus and honeysuckle on the nose leading to perfumed white flowers and a palate that boasts streams of lemon cream and meringue that glide through the creamy lobster bisque. The warm biscuit finish sits comfortably next to the fresh thyme and tarragon flowing throughout the bisque.
- 4 live lobsters (1¼–1½ pounds each)
- 3 tablespoons kosher salt, divided
- ¹/₃ cup extra virgin olive oil
- 6 tablespoons butter
- 2 garlic cloves, sliced
- 2 medium onions, diced
- 2 ribs celery, diced
- 6 medium tomatoes, diced
- ½ cup tomato paste
- ¾ cup brandy
- 1 cup white wine
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch
- 1¾ cups heavy cream
- 1 teaspoon dried tarragon
- 1 teaspoon dried or fresh thyme
- 8 sprigs thyme, for garnish
Make sure 4 lobsters can comfortably fit into your largest pot. Place lobsters in freezer (as it puts them to sleep). Add 2 inches water and 1 tablespoon kosher salt to pot. Bring to rolling boil. Using tongs, quickly transfer lobsters into pot and secure the lid tightly. Steam for 14–16 minutes. Remove from pot and let cool slightly; do not discard cooking water.
Carefully remove lobster meat from claws and tails; reserve all liquids, shells and lobster bodies. Cut tail meat into chunks, then place the whole claws and chunked tail meat in refrigerator.
Bring three-quarter gallons of water (including liquids from lobster steaming process), 2 tablespoons of kosher salt, lobster shells and bodies to a rolling boil. Cook until reduced by one-third. When finished, pour stock through colander. Set aside, discarding any solids.
Add olive oil and butter to a large, heavy-bottomed pot over medium heat. Sauté garlic and onions until translucent, then add celery, tomatoes and tomato paste. Cook for approximately 5 minutes. Deglaze pan with brandy. When evaporated, add white wine until warmed through. Add 2 quarts of the prepared lobster stock, and boil approximately 20 minutes. Lower heat, and whisk in cornstarch. Continue to simmer for 5 minutes, then add heavy cream. Season with tarragon and dried or fresh thyme. Remove from heat.
Using a hand blender, process until very smooth. Prior to serving, add chunks of lobster tail meat, and simmer over medium heat.
To serve, divide bisque into 8 clear, heatproof glass coffee cups. Garnish each with lobster claw meat and sprig of thyme. Serves 8. Note: Recipe may be doubled or tripled, but cook lobster in batches of 4.
Recipe adapted from winemag.com