Spiny Lobster Tail and Asparagus Pasta Recipe

May 18th, 2010 · Tags: Entree · Food · Recipe

Spiny Lobster Tail with Asparagus Pasta Recipe

Growing up on the West Coast of the United States, I didn’t grow up with a passion for lobster.

In some ways, I’ve never really developed a taste for lobster. I’m not sure I’m a fan at all. I don’t get excited about Maine lobsters or vats of melted butter or lobster tails on a menu with a price of “ask your waiter“.

I’d much prefer to crack piles upon endless piles of dungeness crab and pick out all the meaty parts with a tiny fork or my fingers, never making eye contact with the other people at the table as my hands become covered in shell fragments and stray shards of meat yet I don’t pause to wipe off my hands because they’d only get messy again and I’d risk giving up a portion of the crab I could be otherwise eating and the social custom of a civilized dinner table is lost to the moment to the crab.

Um, if you know what I mean.

But, lobster I find has a huge fanbase so I try not to write it off completely. So many people can’t be wrong. Maybe it’s just me. (Or maybe you, too?)

In Italy, I don’t really consider lobster as part of my regular cooking repertoire, as I’ve seen some live lobsters be sold as high as 70 euros for a kilo or two, and that kind of takes the fun out of it. And while I do look for crab often, and never find it other than some soft-shelled guys I don’t really get excited about, I sometimes pick up code di arragoste, spiny lobster tails. They can be a bit steep, around 25 euros a kilo (~$33 for 2.2 pounds) but you don’t need a kilo, or really even a half kilo to make a nice pasta dish just for two.

And they’ll pacify even the biggest crab fans.

If you love lobster, do you eat it with pasta? Let me know your favorite way to eat lobster with pasta in the comments. Maybe it’ll convert me into a lobster lover….maybe.

Spiny Lobster Tails

Spiny Lobster Tail with Asparagus Pasta Recipe

For two. You can use full-size, regular lobster tails in this recipe, too, but you’ll have to cook them longer so that they are cooked fully.

1/2 lb. (Spiny) lobster tails, in shells
3 tablespoons of butter
300g (1/2 lb.) asparagus spears, thinly sliced
150-200g spaghetti pasta
1-2 garlic cloves (optional)
4-5 cherry tomatoes
1 tablespoon olive oil

  1. In a tall pot, set some water to boil for the pasta. Make an X with a knife on the cherry tomatoes. Blanch the cherry tomatoes in hot water for 30 seconds, and then cold water for a few seconds. Remove the skins from the tomatoes and set aside.
  2. Heat the butter until it starts to bubble in a large frying pan. Add the lobster tails, still in their shells, and brown them for a few minutes on both sides and the tail meat isn’t opaque any more. Remove the tails from the pan and set aside until cool enough to touch.
  3. If your water has started to boil, add a small handful of rock salt to the boiling water and then the spaghetti. Cook according to package directions.
  4. While the tail meat is cooling, add the garlic cloves into the remaining (lobster) butter in the frying pan and add another tablespoon of olive oil. Add the sliced asparagus and tomatoes and cook until tender. While the asparagus is cooking, remove the tail meat from their shells and chop it into large chunks with a knife. Add the meat back to the asparagus and tomatoes for a final minute before turning off the heat.
  5. Drain the cooked pasta and set aside 1/2 cup of pasta water. Turn the heat under the frying pan back on, and toss the spaghetti with the asparagus, tomatoes and lobster meat. Add a little pasta water if there’s not enough liquid to toss the pasta with.
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16 Comments

16 responses so far ↓

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  • 1
    rinaz // May 18, 2010 at 7:46 am

    Yummy! I love seafood and once had the most loveliest Pasta alla pescatora that till today, I’m still thinking about it.

    Will give this pasta a try but probably use frozen lobsters. It should be cheaper, yes? :-)

  • 2
    Mister Meatball // May 18, 2010 at 10:26 am

    I prefer lobster simply steamed (I live in Maine after all). Yet, on occasion, it’s nice to to sprinkle some lobster meat over a simple cacio pepe.

  • 3
    FOODESSA // May 18, 2010 at 1:03 pm

    As my hubby always says ” IF, you de-shell it for me…I’ll eat it” My response to that…is “don’t make me any favours” ;)
    I usually still have the eeries when I put those pour souls head first in the boiling water. I’ve never been capable of mustering up enough courage to cut them live!
    I usually eat just lobster…rarely with anything else.
    However, pasta flavoured with great tomato and lobster must be devine!
    I flavour the boiling water and make a little Italian fusion sauce on the side. Yum!
    I’ll be visiting the Gaspé region very soon…I just can’t wait to dig in. I would not give a second thought to eating in a restaurant if that was their specialty! Usually, I prefer getting messy at home ;o)
    Thanks for sharing and flavourful wishes, Claudia

  • 4
    Apest // May 18, 2010 at 1:24 pm

    When I can afford Lobster I like it boiled, then halved and grilled on oven with breadcrumbs, butter, garlic and parsil. But I don’t fancy the act of boiling it as I’m easily impressed. Mum usually does it at Xmas, while I’m in the living room trying not to think at it; hmmm, not like last Xmas, when I heard something fall on the floor, mum screaming and my bro trying to catch the running lobster under the kitchen table with the broomstick.

  • 5
    Ciaochowlinda // May 18, 2010 at 1:50 pm

    I was shocked to see the prices for lobster in Italy compared to the U.S. It’s enough to make you want to go into the lobster export business.
    I like a simple steamed lobster with butter or a lobster roll, but my favorite lobster dish was in Naples – made “al diablo” in a spicy red tomato sauce.

  • 6
    moscerina // May 18, 2010 at 4:08 pm

    Delicious! In my art school days (circa 1996), a boyfriend and I use to dive for lobsters off the coast of Miami. We loved splitting the tails and cooking them on the barbecue with just a pat of butter and Cuban beers. Perhaps the most delicious and simple dish. . .

  • 7
    Kalynskitchen // May 18, 2010 at 5:26 pm

    Not much lobster here in Utah either, but this sounds delicious!

  • 8
    annearnott1 // May 18, 2010 at 7:03 pm

    Funny that you should do this reciper.. I did not have Lobster tails, but the other day I did have raw prawns, asparagus and tomatoes, garlic and I added chilli and spaghetti, it was delicious, :-)

  • 9
    Ms. Adventures in Italy // May 19, 2010 at 7:31 am

    @rinaz – I’m sure it would definitely be cheaper – this was a little below a 1/4 kilo so around 5-7 euro which was acceptable for a meal :)
    @Foodessa / Apest – I haven’t had the pleasure (?) of cooking a live lobster. I probably won’t search it out as an experience. :)
    @Ciaochowlinda – al diablo sounds great – I love spicy!!
    @kalyn – maybe use frozen like someone else said above?
    @annearnott1 – I know, I like prawns better than lobster even! :)

  • 10
    The Food Hunter // May 19, 2010 at 6:58 pm

    this is a great pasta dish. I’m a huge lobster fan but usually eat it grilled with some butter.

  • 11
    susan from food blogga // May 20, 2010 at 8:37 pm

    You know, I grew up in New England with colossal Maine lobsters and was never a fan, much to the chagrin of my dad. Ironically, now that I live in San Diego, I like spiny lobsters. I find them sweeter and less rubbery. I prefer to grill them and dip them in chipotle butter or lime butter. I also love lobster risotto, which you can find in my recipe archives. And don’t forget salad– chunks of chilled lobster on wild arugula with a lemon-parsley vinaigrette. Enjoy!

  • 12
    susan from food blogga // May 20, 2010 at 8:37 pm

    I almost forgot– lobster tacos! :)

  • 13
    Madison // May 20, 2010 at 9:43 pm

    in vodka sauce! especially if you go heavy on the red chili flakes, the sweetness of the lobster brings it to a new level of decadence (and you can use light instead of heavy cream). i also really like lobster-red pepper dip.

  • 14
    Maria // May 21, 2010 at 2:32 pm

    It’s been quite a while since I had lobster and this looks amazing! Love this dish.

    My utmost favorite way is to eat it seaside, stemed with los of butter! But I also do love it in a spicy tomato sauce over pasta.

  • 15
    Status Viatoris // Jun 2, 2010 at 9:16 pm

    I’m hungry!!! When I was living in North West Scotland last year, the local prawn fishermen used to bring me huge boxes of live prawns (we call them prawns in that part of Scotland but they are actually langoustines). Putting them in the bubbling ‘cauldron’ I had for that very purpose was utterly heartbreaking, but they tasted soooooo good! And bearing in mind I was getting for free, what would have cost probably nearly €100 in a restaurant made them taste even better! A lot of the langoustines that you eat in Spain, France and even in Italy are imported from that part of Scotland (not that the Spanish, French or Italians would ever admit it!)

  • 16
    lauri // Jan 1, 2011 at 10:56 pm

    Thanks for the recipe, this was delicious!

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