Photo: Kelsey Hansen; Food Styling: Adam Dolge; Prop Styling: Kashara Johnson
Active Time
25 Mins
Total Time
1 Hour
Yield
Serves 4 (serving size: 4 to 5 pieces)

Inspired by “popcorn” shrimp, these crispy little fried Maine lobster bites make for a next-level snackable and indulgent appetizer. A quick 1-minute boil makes removing the lobsters’ shell a bit easier and the double breading action—with a light, crispy tempura batter followed by panko breadcrumbs—insure an incredible crunch factor. Paired with a tangy beer and mustard dip, they’re the ultimate beachside snack. 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.

How to Make It

Step 1

Pour 1 of the beers into a small saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium-high. Reduce heat to low, and simmer, stirring occasionally, until reduced to about 1/8 cup, about 45 minutes. Remove from heat, and cool to room temperature, about 10 minutes. Transfer reduced beer to a medium bowl. Add sour cream, whole-grain mustard, Dijon mustard, honey, lemon juice, chives, pepper, and 1/4 teaspoon of the salt; whisk to combine. Set aside.

Step 2

Bring water to a boil in a large stockpot over high. Add lobsters, and cook 6 minutes. Transfer lobsters to a bowl of ice and water. Using scissors or a chef’s knife, remove the tail and claws. Remove the meat, and cut meat into 1-inch pieces. Discard shell.

Step 3

Stir together flour, cornstarch, 1/2 teaspoon of the salt, and remaining 1 beer in a medium bowl. Place panko in a separate bowl. Dip lobster pieces in flour mixture, shaking off any excess, and roll in panko.

Step 4

Pour oil to a depth of 3 inches into a heavy-bottomed stockpot or Dutch oven; heat to 325°F. Working in batches, add coated lobster pieces, and cook until golden brown, about 3 minutes. Transfer to a plate lined with paper towels to drain, and sprinkle fried lobster evenly with remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt. Serve hot with lager-mustard sauce.

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