Introduction: FRENCH FRIED COCONUT LOBSTER TAILS
These little wild caught cold water lobster tails from Canada have been marinated in a blend of Coconut milk, Coconut Rum, Lime Juice, ginger and nutmeg. Then they were coated with a mixture of fine yellow cornmeal, gluten-free breadcrumbs, and unsweetened Coconut - after that,they were deep fried in Sunflower Oil. Crispy & crunchy on the outside - sweet and tender on the inside - they are served here with a side of Black beans & rice mixed with *Southwest Corn, a store-bought Mango Peach Salsa dipping sauce, and a glass of spiced rum!
*NOTE: I added a can of DelMonte Whole Kernel Southwest Corn with Poblano & Red Peppers to my black beans and rice and topped them with raw sliced shallots (a separate recipe for my Black Beans & Rice with Southwest corn will follow soon).
Step 1: INGREDIENTS (2 Servings)
FOR THE MARINADE:
- 1 Can (13.5 oz) Parrot Brand Coconut Milk
- 3 TBS Captain Morgan Coconut rum
- 1 Lime
- 1/4 teaspoon grated ginger root
- 1/4 teaspoon grated nutmet
- 1/4 teaspoon Louisiana Hot Sauce
- 4 small lobster tails (used here: 3 ounce wild caught Canadian cold water lobster tails)
- 2 large brown eggs
- 1/2 cup fine yellow cornmeal
- 1 cup coarse breadcrumbs (I used Glutino's Original "Crunchy & Delicious" GF breadcrumbs)
- 1 cup shredded unsweetened Coconut (the coconut that I purchased at Whole Foods was more like shredded coconut that had been coarsely chopped and it was excellent for this recipe)
- 1 tsp Old Bay Seasoning
- 1/2 teaspoon Diamond Crystal Kosher Salt
- 1/2 teaspoon coarse ground black pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon Chipotle Pepper Flakes (optional)
- *Sunflower Oil for deep frying (or any good high-temperature cooking oil)
*NOTE: It is very difficult to estimate the amount of cooking oil used in this recipe; I heated 10 cups (about 80 ounces) of Sunflower Oil to approximately 340 degrees F in my deep fryer to fry the lobster tails. After dinner, and after the oil had cooled, I was able to filter almost all of it back into the original container, so I have estimated that I actually used about 4 TBS of the oil during the frying process.
Step 2: PREPARE & MARINATE LOBSTER TAILS:
- Rinse & pat dry lobster tails.
- Turn them upside down and split the shell lengthwise with kitchen shears.
- Pull meat out of shell and discard shell (I like to leave the tail "fan" on the tail; it makes a nice handle)
- Pour a can of coconut milk into a glass bowl; add the juice of 1 Lime, 1/4 teaspoon each of grated ginger, grated nutmeg, and Louisiana Hot Sauce (always optional, but this is not enough to make the marinade hot), and thoroughly blend all of the ingredients.
- Place the raw lobster tails into the marinade; cover and marinate in the refrigerator for 30 minutes. (Do not marinate for more than 30 minutes. You do not want to overpower the delicate flavor of these young baby lobster tails).
Step 3: PREPARE & FRENCH FRY LOBSTER TAILS:
**Pour a sufficient amount of *high-temperature cooking oil into a deep fryer. (It took about 10 cups of Sunflower Oil to fill my electric cooker/fryer with an amount of liquid suitable for deep frying).
Heat oil to at least 325 degrees Fahrenheit (or within a range between 325 - 375 degrees F). I fried these lobster tails at an rather consistent 335 - 340 degrees F and they turned out perfectly.
While the oil is heating:
- Place the 1/2 cup of yellow cornmeal in a paper plate or dish and mix in the seasonings (1 tsp Old Bay Seasoning, 1/2 teaspoon coarse ground black pepper, 1/4 teaspoon salt, 1/4 teaspoon Chipotle Pepper Flakes if using).
- In a second paper plate or bowl, mix together the breadcrumbs and shredded coconut.
- With a fork, beat the two eggs together in a small bowl, adding a splash of water or milk to make an egg wash..
- Remove the lobster tails from the marinade one at a time; (you can hold them over the marinade until they stop dripping, but you will want them stay wet) and roll them in the yellow cornmeal mixture.
- Next, dip each cornmeal-coated tail into the egg wash; then gently roll it in the breadcrumb/coconut mixture, pressing it into the flesh as you rotate it around.
- When the oil has reached the desired frying temperature - and appears to be holding at that temperature - add the coated lobster tails using long-handled tongs to do so (that oil is hot). (Depending on the size of your deep fryer, you may have to fry them in two batches - you don't want to crowd them)
- It will only take a few minutes for the lobster tails to brown to perfection in the hot oil (maybe 3 or 4 minutes). Watch them carefully, pushing them below the surface with metal tongs or rotating them around if necessary, until they begin floating toward the top of the pot and/or when the appear to be nicely browned (don't overcook lobster, or any seafood for that matter).
- When they are done, remove them from the hot oil with tongs and place them on a paper plate lined with paper towels to drain.
- Serve almost immediately.
- *NOTE: When I refer to high temperature cooking oil I am really referring to a cooking oil that has a high "flash point." There are several charts available on line that describe the various cooking oils and their best uses)
- **NOTE: Please use extreme caution when deep-frying foods in oil. Make sure that the deep fryer is sitting on a solid and stable surface; a place where it cannot possibly slide or fall over. Place the deep fryer well away from any location accessible to small children! Follow the manufacturers instructions in all cases (generally: do not use an extension cord nor place the fryer next to a stove or other heat source), etc. Handle food carefully; use metal tongs to place food in or remove it from the hot oil.
Step 4: TIME TO EAT . . .
Crispy, crunchy, french-fried coconut lobster tails served with black beans,rice & corn - a warm Mango-Peach Salsa for dipping, and a glass of spicy rum and soda.
(I have tried to estimate the nutritional value of this recipe to the best of my ability, using the MyFitNess Pal Recipe Analyzer. However, I find it extremely difficult to estimate the nutrition of a marinade when most of the marinade is discarded after the food has been marinated, or the value of cooking oil when used in a deep fryer after the product has been cooked and almost all of the oil has been filtered and can be used again. Based on my assumptions (and mine only) I believe that the amount of calories used in deep frying these lobster tails can be reduced by approximately 350 calories per serving due to the amount of cooking oil retrieved. Since almost all of the marinade was discarded, I figure another 250 calories was saved for a total savings of 600 calories (or, net calories per serving = 500; not 1,100).