Recently we spent a few glorious nights at the beautiful Montage Hotel in Laguna Beach, California. Lazily hanging out at the spa pool and not moving from the the plush, comfy lounge chairs, we had their fantastic lobster salad two days in a row for lunch. I had to make this at home and share the recipe!
Buying Lobster Tails
For the lobster, I bought small, previously frozen tails that had been thawed at the seafood counter. The small ones work great for lunch. They fit in my hand, weighing approximately 5 ounces each with the shell on.
If you buy frozen tails, thaw them overnight in the refrigerator in a dish to catch juices. If you have frozen tails and need the thawed faster, place tails in a zip plastic bag, squish the air out, then submerge them in cold water. Change the water every 30 minutes until the are thawed.
Lobster too much of a splurge for your budget? This salad also works equally well with more economical shrimp.
Start by butterflying the tails (or ask the person at the seafood counter to do it for you). Using a sharp heavy knife or kitchen shears (like poultry shears), cut through the top, hard, curved side of the shell. Do not cut them totally in half. Stop before you cut through the under side of the shell.
Using your hands, pull the shell and meat apart, creating two halves that are connected. Doing this helps the lobster meat to cook quickly and evenly.
Grilling the Lobster Tails
Fire up your grill. When it is hot, clean well with a stiff grill brush and spray or oil the grate. This way the lobster won’t stick. Put a little olive oil on the lobster and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place meat side down on hot grill. Because these tails are small, they take only about 4-5 minutes.
Like shrimp, you will know when the lobster is done. The shells turn red and the meat is pearly white. Don’t overcook them or you could end up with rubbery lobster. They really do cook fast.
Shell, Slice and Assemble
Using a fork, gently pry the grilled lobster meat out of the shell, the slice crosswise. The yield on the meat was about 4 ounces after grilling and shelling.
Assemble the Salad
To create your lobster salad, pile crisp clean salad greens on a plate. Top with lobster, diced mango, cooked asparagus spears, sliced avocado and a few segments of grapefruit. The flavor combination is terrific. The crunch of crisp greens and asparagus, succulent lobster meat, sweetness from the mango, buttery texture from avocado and a tart tang from the grapefruit.
Blend the Dressing
To dress the salad, make a creamy citrus and mango dressing. Place lime, orange, grapefruit and lemon juices in the blender with a little mango, shallot, honey and oil. Puree until smooth. I could drink this dressing! It is also terrific with grilled fish, shrimp, boneless chicken breast and scallops (that recipe will be posted in August).
Thanks to Mosaic Bar & Grill at the Montage Laguna Beach for sharing with me what was in the dressing. I came up with my own recipe from the list of ingredients, skipping the vinegar.
For help on how to cut up a mango, see the photos in this post.
Lobster Salad with Creamy Citrus Dressing
- Lobster Salad
- 2 small lobster tails about 5 ounces each see post, thawed if frozen, butterflied
- 1 teaspoon olive oil
- Sprinkles of salt and pepper
- 6-8 asparagus spears ends snapped off
- 1/2 of a large avocado
- 1 large grapefruit divided use
- 1 large mango divided use
- Salad greens
- Citrus Dressing makes 1 cup
- 3 tablespoons avocado oil or other light neutral oil
- 2-3 tablespoons finely chopped mango cubes use from salad
- 2 tablespoons red grapefruit juice use from salad
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon orange juice
- 1 tablespoon lime juice
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped shallot
- 1-2 teaspoons honey
- Sprinkles of salt and white pepper
- Heat grill on high, clean and oil the grates so the lobster tails do not stick. Turn grill down to medium. Brush the tails with a few drops of olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Grill the tails meat-side down for about 4-5 minutes. Allow the tails to cool and remove the the meat with a fork. It should pull out easily. Chill while you get the rest of the ingredients ready for the salad.
- Bring a pot of water to a boil, add a little salt. Drop the asparagus in and cook for 2 minutes. Remove spears to a bowl of ice water to stop the cooking process. Drain.
- Slice avocado, segment half of grapefruit, and dice mango.
- Make the dressing. Use half of the mango cubes for the dressing and half for the salad. Place all ingredients in the blender and puree unit smooth, creamy and light. Keep chilled until serving.
- To assemble the salad, place greens on a plate and top with the lobster, mango, grapefruit segments, asparagus, and avocado. Serve dressing on the side or drizzle a a few tablespoons over the top.