Lobster and Red Snapper in Herb Sauce
This is a delicious combination of lobster and fish in which the fish fillet is wrapped around the lobster tail and the two are roasted together. The finished lobster tail and fish combination rests on a simple sauce of fresh herbs. Scott Chen garnished this dish two ways: on the television program he scattered sauteed shiitakes over the fish portion and used flowers and flower petals around the plate; for the still photograph he drizzled sauce over the fish portion and used snow pea pods and tomato roses. Instructions for the pea pod and tomato rose presentation are given below.
- Lobster Tails - four, 12-ounce uncooked
- Red snapper fillets - two, 8-ounce
- Tomatoes - 4, small
- Snow Pea Pods - 12
- Cilantro - 1/2 cup, chopped
- Olive Oil - 1/3 cup
- Herb Sauce
- Cornstarch - 3 tablespoons
- Rice wine or dry white wine - 1/4 cup
- Extra-Virgin Olive Oil - 1 cup
- Garlic Cloves - 3, minced
- Chicken Stock - 2 cups (see Basics)
- Salt - 1 teaspoon
- Lemon Juice - 1 tablespoon
- Basil - 1/4 cup, chopped
- Mint - 1/4 cup, chopped
- Cilantro - 1/4 cup, chopped
- Parsley - 1/4 cup, chopped
Preheat the oven to 375 F. Spray a baking sheet lightly with cooking oil spray and place the lobster tails on the sheet. Bake 10 to 15 minutes, until just cooked through. Plunge the lobster tails into ice water to stop the cooking. When cool enough to handle, cut the top of the tail shell lengthwise with scissors. Cut away the top and bottom shells at the tail flippers, leaving the flippers attached to the tail meat.
Keep the oven at 375 F. Slice each red snapper fillet horizontally into two thin pieces. Wrap a red snapper fillet around each lobster tail and pin in place with toothpicks. Put back on the baking sheet and bake 10 to 12 minutes, until the snapper is cooked through. Remove and keep warm.
To prepare the garnishes: Peel the skin from a tomato in a single long peel. Curl the tomato skin in tight spiral to create a “rose.” Repeat with other tomatoes to form four roses.
Bring a large saucepan of water to a rolling boil and add the pea pods. Cook 30 seconds; remove with a slotted spoon and plunge into ice water. Remove and drain.
Combine the cilantro and olive oil in a blender and puree. Put in a squeeze bottle.
To make the sauce: Dissolve the cornstarch in the rice wine. Heat a heavy saucepan over medium-high heat and add the olive oil and garlic. When the garlic sizzles, add the chicken stock and salt. When the chicken stock boils, remove from heat and add the cornstarch mixture, basil, mint, cilantro, parsley, and lemon juice. Stir to blend; the sauce will thicken.
To serve: Pool a plate with sauce. Place a snapper-wrapped lobster tail in the center of the plate. Remove the toothpicks. Fan three snow pea pods at the other end of the lobster tail and place a tomato rose where the pea pods join the tail. Drizzle a little cilantro puree over the red snapper band around the lobster tail. Repeat with remaining plates.