Lobster Bisque

Lobster Bisque 3 (500x334) Food is magical. One mouthful can transport us back in our memories to a particular event; an aroma can carry us back to a moment in time. Food feeds us physically and emotionally too.

My brother, Valentin and his girl, Vitaliya, tried Lobster Bisque in a lovely French restaurant when they were visiting Quebec, Canada. It was a cold, snowy day and after exploring the beautiful city of Montreal, the velvety and warm Lobster Bisque was utter perfection. That soup stayed bright in their memories and they often talked about it.

If you talk to a cook and a food blogger about something phenomenal that you ate somewhere, it’s only a matter of time before that dish is cooking away in their kitchen. I decided to recreate this deliciousness, using Valentin’s recollections. He even called the restaurant to ask them what was in it. Of course, they didn’t divulge all their secrets, but I did my best to give life to a memory. With the first spoonful, Valentin was just speechless and finally assured me that my experiment was a success. I just love to make people smile while they’re eating and satisfying their food cravings.

The luscious bites of lobster are complemented perfectly with a light and creamy tomato based bisque. I used some other aromatics to add to the flavorful marriage – shallots, garlic, celery and carrots. Roasted tomatoes give the soup some body and great flavor. It’s a superb summer dinner and quite simple to prepare. It amazes me that with a few basic ingredients, you can come up with a meal that tastes like it belongs on a menu for royalty.

Ingredients:

1 lobster (approximately 2 lbs)

Lobster Stock:

Lobster shell

8 cups water

1 cup white wine

1/2 a bunch fresh parsley

2-3 dry bay leaves

1/2 – 1 Tablespoon black peppercorns

salt, to taste

Bisque:

3 lbs tomatoes, seeds removed (about 9 tomatoes)

1 Tablespoon olive oil

1-2 Tablespoons brown sugar

1 onion or 3-4 shallots, minced

2-3 carrots, chopped

2 celery stalks, chopped

2-3 garlic cloves, minced

1 Tablespoon butter, plus 1/2 Tablespoon butter (to saute the lobster meat)

2 Tablespoons flour

1/3-1/2 cup heavy cream

salt, pepper

fresh herbs, minced, to garnish soup

Parmesan Herb Croutons, optional

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil.

Take the seeds out of the tomatoes, coarsely chop the tomatoes and place them on the prepared baking sheet.

Toss the tomatoes with the olive oil, brown sugar and season with salt and pepper. Roasting Tomatoes (500x334) Spread the tomatoes out evenly on the baking sheet and roast the tomatoes for about 40 minutes, just until most of the liquid cooks off and the tomatoes are slightly charred in some areas.

Roasted Tomatoes (500x331) Meanwhile, place the lobster in the freezer for about 30 minutes. Supposedly, this sedates the lobster.

This was my first time working with a live lobster. It was a real adventure!

Eye to Eye With Mr. Lobster (500x375)

Eye to Eye With Mr. Lobster

Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Season with salt. Cut off the rubber bands off the lobster claws. Add the lobster to the boiling water making sure it’s completely submerged. Cook the lobster for about 10 minutes. The lobster will turn pink when it’s done cooking. Boiling Lobser (500x334) Take the lobster out of the water, but set the water aside. We will use some of it to make the flavorful lobster stock.

When the lobster is cool enough to handle, take the lobster meat out of the shell. There will be some meat in the claws and most of it will be in the tail. Cooked Lobster (500x334) Chop the lobster meat into bite sized pieces.

Save the claw shells and the tail shell and place them in the stock pot with 8 cups of the water that we used to cook the lobster in. Add  the white wine, bay leaves, black peppercorns and parsley. Season with salt. Cook the stock for about 30 minutes. Strain the stock through a fine mesh sieve.

Lobster Stock (500x334) In another pot, melt the butter and add the shallots, carrots, celery and garlic. Season with salt and pepper. Cook for about 7-10 minutes, until the vegetables have softened. IMG_4894-2 (500x334)

IMG_4897-2 (500x334) Add the flour and mix it in until it’s completely incorporated. Cook it for about a minute, just to cook off the raw flour taste. IMG_4901-2 (500x334) Add the roasted tomatoes, mix to combine and slowly add in the strained lobster stock, about a cup at a time, mixing it well, to get all the lumps out. Add as much of the lobster stock as you like, depending on the consistency that you like your bisque to be. IMG_4903-2 (500x334)

IMG_4912-2 (500x334) I used almost all of the stock, with about 2-3 cups left over. You can always thin it out, but it’s hard to thicken the bisque, so use less stock than you think you need. After you puree the bisque, you can add more lobster stock to thin it out.

Bring the bisque to a boil and continue to cook for about 10-15 minutes. Puree the soup in batches in a blender. IMG_4913-2 (500x334)

IMG_4918-2 (500x334) Return to the soup pot. Add the cream and mix to combine. Season with salt and pepper, if needed and add at this point you can also add more lobster stock to get the perfect consistency that you want. Lobster Bisque 1 (500x334)

Lobster Bisque 2 (500x334) Meanwhile, melt about 1/2 a Tablespoon of butter in a skillet, add the chopped lobster, season with salt and pepper and cook for just a minute or two. sauteed lobster (500x334) This step is completely optional. I like the buttery taste, the additional salt and the slightly browned lobster.

You can add the chopped, cooked lobster to the soup without sauteing it. Garnish the soup with the lobster, fresh herbs and Parmesan Herb Croutons. Lobster Bisque 4 (500x332)

Lobster Bisque 3 (500x334)

Lobster Bisque
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Recipe type: Soups
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • 1 lobster (approximately 2 lbs)
Stock:
  • Lobster shell
  • 8 cups water
  • 1 cup white wine
  • ½ a bunch fresh parsley
  • 2-3 dry bay leaves
  • ½ - 1 Tablespoon black peppercorns
  • salt, to taste
Bisque:
  • 3 lbs tomatoes, seeds removed (about 9 tomatoes)
  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil
  • 1-2 Tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 onion or 3-4 shallots, minced
  • 2-3 carrots, chopped
  • 2 celery stalks, chopped
  • 2-3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 Tablespoon butter
  • salt, pepper
  • 2 Tablespoons flour
  • ⅓-1/2 cup heavy cream
  • ½ Tablespoon butter (to saute the lobster meat)
  • fresh herbs, minced, to garnish soup
  • Parmesan Herb Croutons, optional
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil.
  2. Take the seeds out of the tomatoes, coarsely chop the tomatoes and place them on the prepared baking sheet. Toss the tomatoes with the olive oil, brown sugar and season with salt and pepper. Spread the tomatoes out evenly on the baking sheet and roast the tomatoes for about 40 minutes, just until most of the liquid cooks off and the tomatoes are slightly charred in some areas.
  3. Meanwhile, place the lobster in the freezer for about 30 minutes. Supposedly, this sedates the lobster.
  4. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Season with salt. Cut off the rubber bands off the lobster claws. Add the lobster to the boiling water making sure it's completely submerged. Cook the lobster for about 10 minutes. The lobster will turn pink when it's done cooking. Take the lobster out of the water, but set the water aside. We will use some of it to make the flavorful lobster stock.
  5. When the lobster is cool enough to handle, take the lobster meat out of the shell. There will be some meat in the claws and most of it will be in the tail. Chop the lobster meat into bite sized pieces.
  6. Save the claw shells and the tail shell and place them in the stock pot with 8 cups of the water that we used to cook the lobster in. Add the white wine, bay leaves, black peppercorns and parsley. Season with salt. Cook the stock for about 30 minutes.
  7. In another pot, melt the butter and add the shallots, carrots, celery and garlic. Season with salt and pepper. Cook for about 7 minutes, until the vegetables have softened.
  8. Add the flour and mix it in until it's completely incorporated. Cook it for about a minute, just to cook off the raw flour taste.
  9. Add the roasted tomatoes, mix to combine and slowly add in the strained lobster stock, about a cup at a time, mixing it well, to get all the lumps out.
  10. Add as much of the lobster stock as you like, depending on the consistency that you like your bisque to be. I used almost all of the stock, with about 2-3 cups left over.
  11. Bring the bisque to a boil and continue to cook for about 10-15 minutes.
  12. Puree the soup in batches in a blender. Return to the soup pot. Add the cream and mix to combine. Season with salt and pepper, if needed.
  13. Meanwhile, melt about ½ a Tablespoon of butter in a skillet, add the chopped lobster, season with salt and pepper and cook for just a minute or two. This step is completely optional. I like the buttery taste, the additional salt and the slightly browned lobster. You can add the chopped, cooked lobster to the soup without sauteing it.
  14. Garnish the soup with the lobster, fresh herbs and Parmesan Herb Croutons.

 
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Comments

  1. Oksana K says

    Wow! this looks like one luxurious soup! just from reading the directions and looking at pics, my mouth got all watery :-P Anyway, i saw once Paula Deen cooked lobster and shrimp bisque on Food Network and wanted to do something similar since then… So now, that i have clear step-by-step directions w/pictures – this is the time! I’m ready! lol. Thank you so much, Olya! :-D

    • says

      Luxurious is the perfect word to describe this soup. It also taste light and fresh. SO yummy. I’m glad that my brother inspired me to make it.

  2. says

    I love making lobster bisque! Will definitely give this recipe a try. After the lobster is done cooking, I place into a large bowl of ice to “shock” it – it will cool down faster and prevent from cooking further :)

    • says

      Thanks, Tatyana! I’d love to hear what you think.
      I ran out of ice:) so I undercooked the lobster just a tad.
      Definitely want to avoid overcooked, rubbery lobster.

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