Foodie Friday: Lobster Alfredo

Old Habits

Mmmmmm, alfredo.

Creamy, cheesy, gooey, deliciousness.

In my former life, I rarely cooked. I was either working long hours and completely unmotivated to spend time cooking for myself. (Quickie guacamole and a bag of tortilla chips in front of the tv doesn’t count, does it?) Or, I was joining friends at innumerable restaurants. And, when confronted with a restaurant menu, it is virtually impossible for me – even today – to select the “healthy” items. No, I am drawn to the creamy, the cheesy, the saucy, the fried, the rich.

These days, I eat very healthfully. Beau is a good influence, I enjoy the domesticity of cooking for us, I have the time to do so, and I have access to the freshest of seafood. So, I eat far better than I used to. You may have noticed that my mother did not hesitate to call me out on this in the blog comments when I first posted about eating steamed fish for dinner. 🙂

Recently, however, in splurging on some half-and-half for my coffee at the store, I mistakenly bought heavy cream instead. It’s been haunting me ever since. You know we don’t waste anything around here. What a handy excuse, because all I could think about was giving in to my old habits and making alfredo.

New Habits

Adding to this strong leaning was the fresh remembrance of the remains of a giant lobster head in my freezer that would work particularly well with alfredo. You’ll recall from that post that I liked using that meat in lobster salad or other prepared ways, rather than straight up with butter.

I couldn’t resist anymore. I decided to combine my old passions with my new cooking habits and my new life’s supply of lobster.

Lobster Alfredo it is!

Finding the Perfect Recipe

As I’ve grown more comfortable in the kitchen and more adept at throwing things together last-minute and using leftovers in creative ways, I rely less and less on recipes.

However, as much as I’ve eaten Fettuccine Alfredo in restaurants, I’d never actually made it myself! So I set off on a perusal of the internet.

I am currently out of flour (and holding out for a stateside grocery run soon) so I ruled out any recipes calling for that. I also looked at lobster alfredo recipes in addition to the traditional alfredos. Lastly, I dug out a recipe card I’ve held onto for more than 2 decades since my cousin awed me by making my first-ever-tasted fettuccine alfredo when he visited for my high school graduation. It left a good impression!

Taking all that together, I got a general sense of the ingredients and approach and started to wing it!

Making Lobster Alfredo

First, I pulled the previously cooked lobster head meat out of the freezer and proceeded to quick thaw it in some water in the sink.

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Previously cooked lobster meat, thawing.

I like to feel organized in my kitchen, so I tend to gather everything up and organize/prep before I start to actually cook anything. (I also clean as I go, washing dishes as I use them, putting used ingredients away and otherwise minimizing the cleanup hell so that I can simply relax after a nice meal.)

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Gathering up the ingredients. That is my empty flour jar in the background!

After the lobster thawed, I diced into into small chunks. I didn’t have a large portion so I wanted to stretch it as much as possible. I heated up butter and the juice of one lime in a large skillet and sautéed the lobster, sprinkling it with seasoned salt. Remember my lobster was cooked already, so this was just a quick sauté to firm up the soft head meat and infuse it with the butter and lime.

I also added garlic paste. (Check the refrigerator section of your grocery store for this or other seasonings – a great alternative when fresh is unavailable and much more punch than dried herbs!) You could also use fresh garlic or garlic powder.

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Sauteing lobster, plenty of butter!

When it was done, I removed it into a small bowl and set it aside. Per usual, I prepared what I could in advance, so that Beau and I weren’t tied to a particular schedule and, when we were ready to eat, the final cooking would be minimal.

Later, after showers and sunset wine, I cooked the fettuccine. Determining how much was easy because I only had half of a box left! That was the perfect amount for us.

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Pasta in process.

Had I been cooking everything together and going straight into dinner, I would have cooked the pasta while I was sautéing the lobster. As it was, Beau and I got sidetracked with a project and delayed dinner. When the pasta was ready, I strained it and tossed in some butter so it wouldn’t stick together while it sat patiently awaiting my next steps.

Also, as some recipes had suggested, I reserved 1/2 cup of the cooking water in case I needed to thin the alfredo sauce later. I didn’t need it, but it was good to have handy as back-up.

Eventually, we were READY TO EAT!

I added cream, butter and parmesan to my large skillet from before and stirred over medium heat for a few minutes until it started to thicken. Then I added the fettuccine and tossed it together to coat with the sauce (and warm the pasta!) Last, I added the lobster to heat it and mix it in with the deliciousness.

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The final stir.

Time to eat! I put a generous helping of pasta on each plate and sprinkled it with more parmesan cheese, accompanied by a simple piece of toast. (I didn’t even bother with butter on the toast – there was plenty in the pasta!) I included peas, a favorite vegetable of Beau’s, on his plate, but I didn’t want anything else on my plate or palate to detract from my pasta passion!

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Take a guess which is mine!

Ohhhhh, it was so good. Satisfying every mental craving as well as tasting good to me.

The Recipe (such that it is)

Although I truly feel my way through cooking most times, I still remember how much my former self thought I needed precise measurements and instructions. So, in a nod to my prior self and any of you that cook that way, I will attempt to button this up a little tighter . . .

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1/2 box uncooked fettuccine (approx 8 oz, or 1/2 lb)
  • Approx 2 c. lobster meat, diced or small chunks
  • 1 lime
  • garlic, to taste (or garlic paste or garlic powder)
  • 1/2 stick butter
  • 1/2 c. (plus!) heavy cream
  • 1/3 cup grated parmesan
  • Salt & Pepper to taste

DIRECTIONS:

  • Follow package directions to make fettuccine (e.g., boil 11 minutes). Reserve cooking water, in case you need to thin sauce later. If you cook pasta early, add a little butter so it doesn’t stick together as it cools.
  • In large skillet (large enough for the whole meal eventually), sauté lobster in 1-2 tbsp butter (or more if it looks dry), the juice from 1 lime and light dusting of seasoned salt and garlic to taste. Remove lobster and set aside.
  • In same skillet, stir together 1/2 cup heavy cream (plus a few liberal splashes!), 1/2 stick butter cut up or softened, 1/3 cup parmesan cheese and pepper to taste.
  • Simmer over medium heat, stirring frequently until it begins to thicken (a few minutes).
  • Add fettuccine and toss together. Stir and it will thicken a bit more.
  • When it seems ready, add in the cooked lobster and mix it in.
  • Serve immediately.

Ohmygosh, typing this up, I want to eat it all over again!

One final note . . .  I deviated a bit from my Foodie Friday mission with this post. This dish is not a classic Bahamian meal that I’m trying to learn. In fact, I’m not sure I’ve ever eaten it in the Bahamas! I included it because it was new to me (and, therefore, a cooking accomplishment!) and it demonstrated one of many, many uses for giant lobster heads or other lobster meat. I trust you’ll let it slide. 😉

Any questions? What is your favorite alfredo recipe? Other favorite meals featuring lobster?

2 Responses to Foodie Friday: Lobster Alfredo

  • Kari says:

    Yum! Cheesy, creamy, Lobster-y :),….that gets my vote! Looking forward to some conch recipes also.
    I recall a new found love for conch that was discovered on your very island some 20+ years ago!
    Don’t think I’ve had it as good since and not very often. But I don’t think it would ever taste as good.
    For me, A key ingredient to a great meal is the experience as well! On a side note, I’m fully caught up on your blog, throughly enjoying living vicariously thru you! <3 K.

    • Dawn says:

      Kari, delightful to see you here! Thanks for following the blog and for your comment. Conch recipes are definitely in our future! My problem is that I usually eat it so fast I forget to take pictures. 🙂 20+ years ago, time flies, fun and tasty then, fun and tasty now! Agreed that experience is part of the culinary fun! Have a great weekend.

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