We upgraded the classic pepper and cheese pasta dish with chunks of supple Maine lobster for an incredible dinner-for-two. Meaning, “date night” needs to happen at home this week. Of course, this dish is easily doubled if you’re serving more than two. Maine New Shell Lobster is harvested during peak season in Maine (roughly late June – early November) when lobsters shed their old shells and grow new shells. Gulf of Maine seawater fills the newly formed shell and naturally “marinates” the meat, creating an intense and more “lobster-y” flavor. New Shell is more tender, delicately textured lobster meat. The thinner shell even makes the lobsters easy to crack, pick and eat by hand.
1/2 pound uncooked spaghetti
8 cups water
1 (1 1/4- to 1 1/2-lb.) live Maine new shell lobster
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 1/2 ounces pecorino Romano cheese, grated (about 1/2 cup plus 2 Tbsp.)
1 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh tarragon
How to Make It
Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain and set aside.
While pasta cooks, bring 8 cups water to a boil in a large stockpot over high. Add lobster, and cook 6 minutes. Transfer lobster to a bowl filled with ice and water; let stand until cool enough to handle. Reserve 1/2 cup of the cooking water. Using scissors or a chef’s knife, remove and discard the lobster shell. Chop meat into 1-inch pieces, and set aside.
Melt butter in a large skillet over medium-high. Add the pasta, cheese, pepper, salt, and 1/4 cup of the reserved cooking water. Cook, stirring constantly, until cheese is melted. If you prefer a creamier sauce, add the remaining 1/4 cup reserved cooking water. Stir in the lobster.
Divide pasta mixture evenly between 2 plates. Sprinkle evenly with tarragon, and serve hot.
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