A lobster has wide, powerful claws. Lobsters are a blue-black color when taken from the bottom of the sea and turn a beautiful red only once they are cooked. A lobster that weighs just over a kilo will usually be about 5 years old.
A (live) American lobster is slightly lighter and browner than a European lobster, which is practically black. The American lobster has white marks on the side of the carapace (not yellow) and a spike on the bottom of the “beak” on the forehead. The American lobster can live at greater depths than the European lobster, which is one reason why there is concern that the live American lobster that have started to appear in Europe may become an invasive species.
Many chefs think that lobster caught in the North Sea taste better than their close relations from the other side of the Atlantic. Whether this is down to real differences in flavor or patriotism is hard to say.
How to cook lobster
There should be room for the whole lobster in the boiling water. It needs to go in claws and head first.
Boiled lobster should ideally cool in its own liquid. Cook in clean, fresh sea water if you can. One and a half tablespoons of salt in one liter of water is equivalent to sea water.
Approximate cooking times (too little cooking is better than too much):
Whole lobster up to 1/2 kg 8 to 10 minutes
Whole lobster up to 1 kg 12 to 15 minutes
Whole lobster up to 2 kg 15 to 18 minutes
It’s a waste not to make stock out of the lobster shell. Roast it first to bring out more flavor. The sauce you make from the stock from spiny lobster or lobster is ideal for mild-tasting, poached fish.
You can cook spiny lobster in the same way as you cook lobster, but the flesh is slightly less firm and has slightly less flavor.
Boiled lobster. The salt in the cooking water is enough to add flavor but some add sugar, beer, dill, etc. Serve with melted butter and an attractive garnish.
Due to regulated fishing, the future for many lobster populations in the world looks positive. It may even be the case that the pressure on the American lobster population suddenly abated with the stock market crash in 2008…