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TODAY
updated 2/7/2006 2:57:55 PM ET 2006-02-07T19:57:55

They’re pink, they’re luscious, they’re expensive. What could better say "love" than lobsters? OK, maybe diamonds. But when it comes to food to make the heart beat faster, almost nothing beats this coveted crustacean. Ed Brown, executive chef of the noted Sea Grill restaurant at Rockefeller Center in New York City, was invited on the “Today” show to demonstrate his succulent lobster dishes. Here are the recipes.

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Lobster a la Plancha, Sweet Garlic Sauce and Spaghetti Squash
(Serves 4)

For the lobster:
2 (2-pound) lobsters
2 tablespoons softened butter
Salt and fresh-ground black pepper to taste

Remove claws and knuckles, cook fully (by steaming or in boiling water) and set aside in refrigerator. Cook the tails separately for only 5 minutes, chill and split centrally, resulting in 4 halves.

In a medium non-stick sauté pan at medium heat melt butter until sizzling, add blanched lobster meat (in shell), meat side facing down. Increase heat to medium-high and cook about 3 minutes each side. Season at the end of this step.

For the sauce:
2 heads fresh garlic, split in half
2 teaspoons olive oil
2 sprigs thyme
Pinch chili flakes
Pinch salt
1 cup heavy cream

Pre-heat oven to 300 degrees F. In a small, ovenproof pot, place garlic cut side down. Add olive oil, thyme, chili and salt. Cover with foil and place in oven for 30 to 40 minutes until very tender.

When done, let garlic cool to the touch, then squeeze cloves from skin, leaving clean roasted garlic.

In a small, non-reactive saucepan heat cream on medium-high until simmering. Add roast garlic and simmer for 2 minutes.

Put contents of saucepan into a blender and process to a very smooth sauce. Season with salt and pepper, and keep warm.

For the squash:
1/2 small spaghetti squash, split and cleaned
1 cup water
2 teaspoon truffle butter (regular is also fine)
2 teaspoons truffle oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Place squash on a baking pan, cut side down. Pour water around squash and cover with foil. Bake in oven till tender (about 30 minutes).

When squash has cooled enough to handle, scrape squash from skin with a fork. It will come out stringy.

In a medium, non-reactive sauté pan on medium heat add all ingredients and cook together for about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

Assembly:
Place 2 tablespoons of squash in each of 4 bowls. Place lobster on top with meat side up, spoon sauce around.

Creamy Lobster Risotto With Wild Mushrooms and Bacon
(Serves 4)

For the lobster:
All claws from 4 (2-pound) lobsters.

Cook (by steaming or in boiling water). Remove shell and cut into large pieces.

For the mushrooms:
1 teaspoon olive oil
1 teaspoon butter
1/4 pound slab bacon, skin removed and finely diced
3/4 cup wild mushrooms, cleaned and broken in large pieces
1 fresh shallot, peeled and finely chopped
2 teaspoons flat (Italian) parsley, cleaned, stemmed and rough chopped
1 teaspoon fresh thyme, picked from the stem
Salt and pepper to taste

In a medium sauté pan on medium-high heat melt oil and butter together with bacon. When fat is sizzling, add mushrooms and cook, moving infrequently, for about 3 to 4 minutes. Add shallots, herbs, salt and pepper, and remove to a flat plate. Set aside and do not refrigerate.

For the risotto:
2 teaspoons olive oil
1/2 small white onion, peeled and finely diced
3/4 cup Arborio rice
1/2 cup dry white wine
4 cups hot fish stock or lobster stock (may not need all; water is OK)
1 tablespoon soft butter
1 tablespoon grated Reggiano cheese
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

In a non-reactive medium saucepan heat oil on medium fire, add onion and sweat gently without color until translucent. Add rice and cook while stirring for 1 minute. Add wine and bring to simmer while stirring. Add stock 1/4 cup at a time, stirring constantly until rice is tender (may not use all). Add lobster in last 2 minutes of cooking to heat. Remove from the heat, add butter and cheese. Mix well.

Assembly:
Divide the risotto equally on 4 plates, top with mushroom mixture.

Lobster Salad With Hearts of Palm and Cognac Sauce
(Serves 4)

For the cognac sauce:
1/2 cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoons tomato ketchup
1/4 teaspoon Tabasco sauce
1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
2 tablespoons Cognac (a good brand)
Salt and pepper to taste

In a non-reactive bowl, whisk all ingredients together, keep chilled.

For the lobster:
2 (2-pound) lobsters

Cook completely (by steaming or in boiling water). Split centrally. Set claws and knuckles aside.

For the salad:
1/2 pound fresh hearts of palm (canned is also acceptable)
1/2 red pepper, cored and seeded, large julienne
1/2 yellow pepper, cored, seeded, large julienne
1/3 bunch fresh chives, cut into 2-inch segments
1/4 small red onion, peeled, split, sliced
1 tablespoon extra-vrgin olive oil
1 fresh lime, juiced
Salt and pepper to taste

Combine all ingredients and serve immediately.

Assembly:
Remove tail meat from shells. Lay shells from half lobster on each of four plates. Pour some sauce in each shell. Cut lobster in chunks and place back in the shells. Mound salad on top of each lobster body. Drizzle remaining sauce around.

Lobster ‘Cappuccino’
(Serves 4)

2 heads from 2-pound lobsters, chopped in large pieces
1-1/2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium onion, peeled, cut in half and sliced
1 small carrot, peeled, chopped small
1-1/2 tablespoons tomato paste
3 tablespoons cognac
3/4 cup white wine
2 cups heavy cream
2 cups water
1 garlic clove, peeled, bruised
3 sprigs fresh thyme
4 sprigs fresh tarragon
2 teaspoons soy sauce
Salt and cayenne pepper to taste
2 tablespoons fresh frozen soybeans, outer skin removed
Knuckles from 4 (2-pound) lobsters, shell removed and cut into large pieces

In a heavy-bottomed, non-reactive soup pot heat oil at medium-high heat. Add shells and let cook , move infrequently until forming a fond (crust) on the bottom. Add onion and carrot and cook until caramelized (about 10 minutes). Add tomato paste and cook 4 to 5 minutes. Add Cognac, then deglaze with the wine, scraping the bottom to release the fond, and bring to simmer. Add cream, water, garlic and herbs, bring to a boil, then simmer about 30 minutes. Season with soy, salt and pepper. Strain twice through fine sieve strainer.

Assembly:
Warm the soybeans and lobster in the soup at the last moment and spoon into the cups. OPTIONAL: Serve in cappuccino cups, top with a little warm frothed milk. Sprinkle top with dried, pulverized lobster coral (the red roe sometimes found in lobsters).

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