If you have never cooked lobster before, baking it is one of the easiest things you can do. Baking creates a delicious, sweet flavor in the lobster meat. It is a gentle way to cook this type of seafood that concentrates the flavors.
While you can get a tasty lobster tail by popping it into the oven and letting to cook, if you want to use larger tails, it is best to wrap the lobster in a foil pouch to keep it from drying out during cooking. Either way, you want to start with a thawed lobster tail. Remember to thaw them in the refrigerator; do not let them sit out on the counter.
Hold the lobster tail in your hand and use a pair of kitchen shears to cut down one side of the lobster belly as close to the side as possible. Repeat this on the other side. Cut across just in front of the tail flukes so you can remove the belly portion of the shell. You will see a white membrane covering the meat. Feel free to cut this membrane away so the meat will look better when you plate it up after cooking.
Now, take a knife and slide it into the shell between the meat and the shell. Cut carefully around the meat so it will be easy for your diners to remove it while eating.
Mix up some clarified butter, lemon juice, paprika, salt, pepper, and garlic powder. Drizzle this mixture over your uncooked lobster tails. Center the tail on a sheet of aluminum foil and seal it up by bringing the two sides together and folding them so they do not come apart. Fold up each end.
How Long do You Bake Lobster Tails
Place your foil pouches in a 450 degree F oven. Check your lobster tail frequently so it does not burn. Twelve ounce tails and larger will take about half an hour or so to bake. Smaller tails will vary from 12 to 24 minutes, so keep an eye on them!
When the lobster tails are cooked, unwrap them and serve with melted butter. They are really delicious! They pair up well with baked potatoes, salad, and roasted vegetables. This is an elegant way to serve lobster that is also so simple you will not believe it. Make the most of that seafood you just bought at the local fish market and pop it in the oven. Let the lobster cook itself.
In many places you can get Maine lobster that has been flown in overnight so it is fresh, but why not try the local spiny lobster? Since you are just eating the tail with this recipe anyway, spiny lobster will suit it just fine. Spiny lobsters do not have the large claws that East Coast lobsters do. You will get a good price on them and they will taste just as sweet and delicious. They cook the exact same way, so save yourself a little money, and splurge on some more ingredients for your delicious lobster meal.
Photo Credit: Baked lobster tails and shrimp Drawn butter NomNomNom by mariojas1 on Flickr
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