There are few dishes that are as quintessentially New England as the lobster roll. Whether you like them warmed up and drenched in butter Connecticut-style, or prefer the cold and mayo-topped Maine version of the dish, nothing beats the beloved crustacean-filled sandwich. Learn how to make lobster rolls like a true Massachusetts native with this recipe excerpt from local chef and food writer Annie B. Copps’ new cookbook “A Little Taste of Cape Cod: Recipes for Classic Dishes.”
There are many ways to make a lobster roll. This one is straightforward, with no mucking about—the point is to be able to taste the lobster, the distinct sweet flavor of which is also subtle and shouldn’t get lost among stronger flavors or too much mayonnaise.
It is important to use New England–style hot-dog buns. These soft, straight-sided, flat-bottomed rolls are ideal for buttering and toasting on both sides, which lends a lot of flavor and texture to the lobster roll.
MAKES 6 SANDWICHES
-2 pounds cooked lobster meat, coarsely chopped
-3 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
-3 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh celery leaves
-About 3/4 cup mayonnaise
-2 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
-6 New England–style hot-dog buns
-6 large butter (Bibb) lettuce leaves
1. In a bowl, combine the lobster meat, parsley, and celery leaves. Add half of the mayonnaise, fold gently to combine, and taste. The lobster should be the predominant flavor, but there should be (just) enough mayonnaise to hold the ingredients together; add more mayonnaise if necessary.
2. Spread the butter on both sides of the hot-dog buns. In a large sauté pan over medium heat, toast the buns, turning once, until deeply browned on both sides, about 2 minutes per side. Lay a lettuce leaf inside each bun and divide the lobster mixture evenly among them. Serve right away.