Serves 8 (exact amounts are left to your generosity & discretion)
• 4 lobsters – live for you to prepare or get your local fishmonger to cook and clean for you and give you all the shells & heads to make your stock. (You can substitute lobster by any shellfish such as crab, prawns, mussels, clams)
• 2 cups homemade lobster bisque, prepared from the shells (or bought) having roasted them and gently simmered with roughly chopped stock vegetables (carrots, leeks, celery) and a sprig of thyme for 1- 2 hours until reduced
• Good quality dry linguine – 500g for a starter, double it for a main course,
• A knob of butter
• Shaved fresh chilli to taste
• Lots of shaved garlic to taste
• Large bunch of fresh parley (stem and leaf) chopped
• Zest of 2 lemons and their flesh chopped and the juices kept (seeds sieved out)
• Sea salt, freshly-ground black pepper and crushed fennel seeds to taste
• Loads of patience & love, ready to share with your friends
• Good quality Pastis (or Armagnac) for the cook and to flambé the dish before serving
Pour some pastis for the team and start preparing!
Melt the desired amount of butter in a big heavy-based pan on a hot gas hob.
Add lashings of olive oil with the garlic, chilli, lemon, seasoning and fennel seeds.
Once all caramelised, deglaze with Pastis and fold in the parsley while still cooking … add the lobster meat chopped in big chunks and the lobster bisque and then reduce the heat.
Bring gently to a simmer and now taste and adjust … check acidity, salt, creaminess off sauce (might need a bit more butter or olive oil, or even creme fraiche).
Turn the heat off and let it rest while you boil the pasta according to packet instructions, drain (keeping a cup of the water) and fold in with the other ingredients. You might need some of that kept water if the mix is a little dry.
Warm gently and put the whole pan on top of a big chopping pan in the middle of the table once everybody is seated, and serve directly into heated bowls.
For added drama you might like to flambé the dish, by warming some Pastis and igniting before pouring it.
Fold into the linguini before serving
Eat slowly and wash down with a dry viognier or a bone-dry sauvignon