Who doesn’t dream of lobster risotto? Think of the flavor being closer to dipping a lobster tail in butter vs a lobster bisque, where you would typically find lot of other lobster risotto recipes. Make this dish for date night, the weekend, or whenever you just want to treat yourself to something a little more special. Like all my other risotto recipes this one does require a little attention, but in no way are you going to get an arm workout. Easy, and delicious.
Risotto takes about 18-20 minutes to cook, and within that amount of time you are simmering, mixing, waiting, and mixing some more until the rice is perfectly creamy and cooked. Imagine if you were to cook the lobster in that amount of time, the result would be a chewy overcooked mess. Instead the lobster is slowly and gently cooked in a decent, okay a lot, of butter. Does this add time to the overall dish? Yes, but the result is worth it. A few things to note:
Don’t worry, just because we aren’t cooking the risotto with the lobster doesn’t mean we won’t impart a ton of lobster flavor. First of all, the herby butter we are using to poach the lobsters will be used as the fat the cook down the base, AND used to finish the risotto. While that will lay down the base of lobster flavor it is actually the shells that are simmered in with the broth that will really make this risotto taste like lobster .
Absolutely! Buy 4-5oz lobster tails, but hey no one is stopping you from buying larger ones. If opting for frozen give ample time to defrost. Once removed, pat the lobster meat with a paper towel to absorb any excess water before poaching.
No. The point of this dish is that the lobster flavor is light and delicate, not forced and artificial. I have tested a great deal of seafood broth / lobster stock and I find that they can lean overly fishy in flavor. By using the shells to impart flavor in a chicken or vegetable broth you wont get an overly fishy, or artificial fish stock flavor, just lobster.
This lobster risotto recipe is more lengthy than my other ones, but worth it. In addition to the standard risotto step by steps, the lobster needs to be poached, and the broth needs to come together. These extra steps might make making risotto intimidating, but I assure you they are just as easy as the others on this site. While the steps below are a great guide always refer to the recipe card at the bottom of the page for full instructions.
Butter poach the lobster– Add a stick of butter to a medium saucepan with the water, and parsley. Over low heat bring this to 160F degrees and keep it in the 160F-180F range. The butter will break at 190F. I highly suggest you use a thermometer, too high and your butter will break and begin to brown. While the butter is coming to a simmer crack open the lobster tails by cutting the top and bottom, cracking it open and carefully slipping the meat out. Add the lobster meat to the now simmering butter. Cook for either 6-7 minutes if completely submerged or 2-3 minutes on each side. Remove when done, but save the butter. Cook time is an approximate, always check the doneness before removing. Lobster will be opaque when finished.
Make the Broth– In a saucepan add the 2 cups of broth, 2 1/2 cups of water, a heavy pinch of salt, and the lobster tails. Simmer for 15 minutes with the lid on. Start this step as soon as you remove the meat from the tails.
Sauté the base – Add 4 tbsp of the lobster butter to a wide pot or pan on low heat. Sauté the base, in this recipe it is garlic and shallots. Cook for 2-3 minutes until soft and fragrant, but not brown. If the garlic begins the brown the heat is too high.
Toast the risotto – Next, add the dry not washed rice to the pan and toast it for 3-5 minutes until grains start to become translucent. I can not stress enough, do not wash the rice beforehand, this will completely strip the rice of the starches it needs to make this dish super creamy.
Deglaze with wine – If adding wine (optional in some recipes, suggested in this one) deglaze the pan and cook for another 2-3 minutes until the alcohol cooks off. The grains of rice will have started to absorb a good amount of the wine.
Add broth– When you reach the level of lobster flavor, strain the broth. Add the warm broth to the risotto, but not all at once! For every cup of risotto, you need approx 4- 4 1/2 cups of broth. Have extra on hand! I found with different brands of arborio rice I needed + or – a cup. My rule of thumb is to pour just enough broth to cover the risotto, when the broth starts to dip below the grains it is time to add more.
Mix, add, shake – Mix 2-3 times per broth add. If you end up mixing more, no biggie! Also give the pan a mix or a shake midway to ensure the rice isn’t sticking to the bottom.
Final adds – In the last few minutes, right before all the broth has been absorbed add the parm, chopped lobster meat, and 2 more tbsp of the lobster butter. Turn off the heat, mix to incorporate, and serve immediately.
Store leftovers in the fridge for 2-3 days. With that said, it won’t have the same velvety texture and creaminess when you re-heat so try to enjoy it while it is fresh.
Looking for other risotto recipes? Check out the below! I assure you they are all delicious .