Lobster Thermidor

In colonial times, lobster was so plentiful that it was considered poor man’s food. By the 1800’s, it was reserved for special occasions and frequently served in a rich cream sauce.

[quicklook-recipe prep_time=”20 min” cook_time=”37 min” serves=”4″ details=”” ]

[ingredients-list title=”Ingredients” serving_size=””]

  • 4 frozen and thawed small rock lobster tails (8 ounces each)
  • 1 tablespoon butter or margarine
  • 1 cup sliced fresh mushrooms
  • 4 shallots, chopped, or 1⁄4 cup finely chopped onion
  • 3⁄4 cup half-and-half
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour


  • 1 teaspoon dry mustard
  • 1⁄2 teaspoon salt
  • 1⁄8 teaspoon ground red pepper (cayenne)
  • 3⁄4 cup low-fat (1% milkfat) milk
  • 2 large egg yolks, lightly beaten
  • 2 tablespoons dry sherry or lower-sodium chicken broth
  • 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese


[step-list-wrapper title=”How to make it” time=”57 minutes”]
[step-item number=”1″ image_url=”” title=”” ]Rinse lobster tails. In a Dutch oven, bring 8 cups water to a boil. Add lobster tails; return to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer, uncovered, for 6 to 10 minutes or until shells turn bright red and meat is opaque. Drain well. Cool slightly. Place each lobster tail with meat side up. Remove the meat from the shells (tip, below). Place shells in a shallow baking pan. Cut meat into 1-inch chunks.[/step-item]

[step-item number=”2″ image_url=”” title=”” ]Preheat the broiler. In a medium-size skillet, melt the butter over moderate heat. Add the mushrooms and shallots and cook for 3 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat. Stir in lobster.[/step-item]

[step-item number=”3″ image_url=”” title=”” ]In a medium-size saucepan, whisk together the half-and-half, flour, dry mustard, salt, and red pepper. Add the milk. Cook over moderate heat, whisking constantly, for 8 minutes or until mixture is thickened and bubbly. Slowly stir about 1⁄2 cup of the hot mixture into the egg yolks, then return this mixture to the saucepan. Cook, whisking constantly, for 3 minutes or until mixture thickens (do not boil). Stir in the mushroom mixture and dry sherry; heat through.[/step-item]

[step-item number=”4″ image_url=”” title=”” ]Spoon the hot lobster mixture into the lobster shells. Sprinkle the Parmesan cheese over lobster mixture in shells. Broil 5 inches from the heat for 2 to 3 minutes or until the Parmesan cheese is melted and lightly browned.[/step-item] [/step-list-wrapper]

Tip: Opening Lobster tails (for above)
Place lobster tail underside up. With kitchen shears, cut away the thin undershell of the tail to expose the meat. Carefully pull the meat from the shell with a sturdy fork.

[nutrition-info calories=”329″ calories_fat=”” fat=”16g” sat_fat=”9g” choles=”230mg” sodium=”1,179mg” carbs=”12g” sugars=”” protein=”32g” fiber=”1g”]


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Originally Published in Reader's Digest