Basil-scented Caribbean Lobster
Chef Roy Khoo brings his Malaysian heritage and fresh Caribbean ingredients together. A spicy sambal — a thick paste-like sauce similar to American chili sauce — is made first, then used to flavor the lobster-basil-spinach mixture which is poured over the rice. Jasmine rice is a particular type of rice which has a flowery bouquet; plain rice may be substituted. The pigeon peas are used for garnish, and may be eliminated. They must soak overnight before preparation.
- Pigeon Peas - 1/2 cup
- Spicy Lemongrass - Ginger Sambal
- Tamarind - 4 ounces
- Warm Water - 1-1/2 cups
- Shallots - 1 pound, peeled
- Garlic Cloves - 4, peeled
- Gingerroot - 1-1/2 inches, fresh, peeled
- Tomatoes - 2, medium, quartered
- Chili Paste - 1 tablespoon, ground
- Turmeric - 1-1/2 tablespoons, ground
- Coriander - 1 tablespoon, ground
- Macadamia Nuts - 5 ounces
- Lemongrass stalks - 3
- Sugar - 1/4 cup
- Salt - 1 tablespoon
- Extra-Virgin Olive Oil - 2 tablespoons
- Coconut-Jasmine Rice
- Shallots - 2, sliced thin
- Olive Oil - 1 tablespoon
- Salt and freshly ground white pepper to taste
- Coconut Milk - 1-1/2 cups
- Jasmine Rice - 2 cups
- Water - 1-1/2 cups
- Garlic Clove - 1, diced
- Shallot - 1, diced
- Extra-virgin olive oil - 1 tablespoon
- Caribbean Lobster meat - 2 cups, diced
- Basil leaves - 4, cut in julienne
- Spicy Lemongrass - ginger sambal (above) - 3 tablespoons
- Coconut Milk - 1 cup
- Spinach - 1 cup, blanched
- Kaffir Lime Leaves - 2, cut in julienne
- Sweet Potato Spirals (see Basics)
To prepare the pigeon peas: Place the peas in a small deep saucepan and cover them with warm water. Let soak overnight. Drain the water, add new water to cover, and boil until soft, about 1 hour. Drain and reserve.
To make the sambal: In a small mixing bowl, crush the tamarind slightly, adding the warm water. Let soak for 15 minutes, then strain through a fine-meshed sieve. In a food processor or food mill, grind the shallots, garlic, ginger, tomatoes, chili paste, turmeric, coriander, Macadamia nuts, and lemongrass into a paste. Pour the olive oil in a saute pan over medium heat and add the paste mixture, sugar, and salt. Saute, stirring continuously, until slightly browned, about 30 - 40 minutes. After mixture is browned, add reserved tamarind juice to paste mixture. Cook until a loose paste forms, 5 to 7 minutes.
To make the rice: In a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, saute the shallots in the olive oil until soft. Add salt and pepper and toss together. Stir in the coconut milk, rice, and water. Bring to a boil, lower heat to simmer, cover, and cook until the rice is soft, about 20 minutes.
To make the lobster: Using a medium skillet, saute the garlic and shallots in olive oil over medium-high heat until soft. Add the lobster meat and basil and stir. Add the sambal and coconut milk and cook until bubbling and slightly thickened, about 3 minutes. Stir in the spinach and Kaffir lime leaf and cook 30 seconds longer.
To serve: Place the coconut rice in the center of each serving plate. Top with the lobster mixture. Place fried sweet potato garnish on top and sprinkle the plate with pigeon peas