Tomorrow is July 4th, or what my American readers will know as the 4th of July. It’s actually Independence Day, celebrating our resolve to become our own nation, rather than a country under English rule, but for most Americans, it’s a day to gather together with friends and family, fire up the grill and throw back a few beers, and watch stuff blow up.
This year, Ian and I are spending the day with his extended family; when I was young, my family and I would pile into the car and make our yearly pilgrimage to Newburyport, MA, where both of my parents are from, for a huge gathering of my mom’s side of the family. Since most of that branch of the family has since dispersed — my godparents, who hosted it, are enjoying their retirement in Florida — I haven’t had a solid 4th of July plan in a number of years, and I miss it. I’m really looking forward to it, and hoping for good weather, because Ian and his dad are planning a hike while we’re there.
In any case, lobster is of course a staple of Independence Day gatherings, particularly in Maine and throughout New England, so I thought I would share with you my preferred method for cooking up and serving these critters. We got little one-pounders, so we got three, and planned to split the third. Luckily, Ian prefers tail meat and I prefer claw meat, so we were both happy with the way the third lobster was split.
Steamed Maine Lobster with Lemon Butter
- 2-4 lobsters weighing 1-1.5 lbs each
- a few inches of seawater or heavily salted tap water
- 2 sticks of butter
- juice from 1/2 a lemon
In the largest stockpot you can find, bring 2-3 inches of sea water or heavily salted tap water to a boil. Place your lobsters in the pot and put the lid on it. Boil/steam for 8-12 minutes and remove with tongs to a plate to cool until you can actually touch them. Melt butter and add lemon juice. Dip lobster meat in lemon butter and eat as you go (like Ian) or pick all the meat and save it up in the bowl of butter until you have cleaned the whole lobster body and then enjoy it (like me.)