Being on the Wild Coast in South Africa has its advantages. between the 1st of March and 31st October very fresh, very cheap East Coast rock lobster is one of them.
Here's a basic guide on how to aquire, clean & cook them like a Pondoman.
Step 1: Aquisition
A couple days before they needed, let your staff know that you looking for rock lobster.
(They'll spread the word to the collectors in the community).
One of the more successful, and my favourites is a guy named Between.
Once they come to the back of the kitchen, check for size, 65mm from between the horns
to the end of head, (using a measure, mine is two nails in a piece of wood, spaced the right distance apart.)
Pay the man.
In this can is was 2x R10, 1xR8 & 6xR6.
(The R is for rands, our currency, currently trading at R7.60ish to the dollar.)
Step 2: What's Needed
After aquiring your rock lobster (8 per person per day & you'll need a licence for them),
it's time to prepare & cook them.
So what we need is:
A pair of Crayfish Gloves (not absolutely essential, but useful)
Rock Lobsters (duh)
No sympathy & a strong stomach (you'll see why in a moment
Step 3: Cleaning It (or How to Remove the Guts Like a Local)
Now's when the strong stomach is needed, cause this is
happening to a very much alive rock lobster
Snap off a feeler so its a bit longer than the body.
Gerabbing the cray in your left hand (like in the pic),
insert the feeler into its 'anus?' and carry on until its almost
all the way in.
Now pull it out again slowly, removing the tube as you go
Step 4: Cook It
This is now the easy part.
Pour about half inch salted water into a pan.
Add the rock lobster.
Cover & steam for about ten to fifteen minutes.
Eat while still hot accompanied by lemon wedges.
(sorry no photos, my hands were full of lobster.