Αστακομακαρονάδα (pronounced Astakomakaronada) is a must-taste gourmet plate if you ever find yourself in a Greek island. It is also a favourite for Kitchen in a Suitcase so I will gladly cook it anywhere a fresh Lobster can be found nearby. You should definitely try it!
First thing first, so let’s take a minute to make sure we know about fresh lobster. In most of the places I cooked this recipe I was very close to the source. In Haiti for example I would look at a trusted fisherman to deliver the lobster alive the same day in a bucket with sea water when possible. Lobsters tend to eat themselves when out of their natural habitat until they starve to death so you need to cook them immediately if you want all the flavour to come out. I know it sounds a bit cruel but if you make sure you don’t buy baby -sized lobsters or from areas of extinction and you are not a dedicated veagan then you will survive and most probably forget about it the moment you take the first bite. So here are some tips on buying supermarket lobster. You can also try here for some extra information online.
- 1,5 to 2 kg fresh lobsters (alive preferably, medium to big size)
- 1kg/2 packets spaghetti or linguini (or other pasta depending on your preferences)
- Extra virgin olive oil
- 2 big red onions finely sliced
- 3 garlic cloves finely sliced
- 1kg/6-7 tomatoes (preferably plum tomatoes, freshly grated, remove the skin)
- 1tbs tomato paste
- 150gr/1 cup white dry wine
- 1 cup fresh chopped parsley
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 cloves
- 1/2 teaspoon sugar
- salt & freshly grated pepper to taste
And now what?
In a big heavy-bottom pan with a lid boil water. Add the lobsters and boil with the lid. Be extremely careful as pipping hot steam will escape. Depending on the size of the lobsters I will usually cook for 10-20min maximum. Usually 15 min should be enough but you can also pay attention to your lobsters changing colour. They should have a shiny lively orangish colour by now.
Carefully remove lobsters from boiling water and put aside in a strainer. Keep the water in the pan as we will use it later to boil our pasta right before our sauce is ready for serving so we can keep the texture al dente. Here are some tips for cooking pasta. Clean the surface of the boiling water from any foamy or greasy lobster extracts with a spoon. Keep also a cup of this lobster broth separately for your sauce.
If you have more than one lobsters separate half and remove the meat from the shell and claws. If you have a big one cut in half and keep half aside.
Next step is preparing the sauce. Drizzle extra virgin olive oil in a big sauce pan and saute the sliced onion in medium heat until translucent, add the sliced garlic and stir for 2 more minutes. Add the freshly grated tomatoes, turn the heat to maximum until the mixture reaches boiling point. When boiling add the wine, cook for 3min approximately in high heat and then turn down to low heat. Add half cup of the lobster broth and keep the other half to add progressively as needed. Add the tomato paste, bay leaves, cloves, sugar, salt and pepper, stir and let it boil for 10-15 minutes.
If need, add more from the lobster broth to keep a nice sauce texture (not too watery not too thick). Then add the lobster meat and boil for another 5 minutes. Always pay attention to your sauce to avoid burning. When the sauce is ready turn the heat off and put aside.
Boil you pasta in the broth according to package specifications, you can add some salt in your broth if you’ld like. Strain pasta, remove the heavy bottom pan from heat and discard any remaining broth. Put the pasta back in the pan, add the sauce and stir vigorously until sauce has covered all pasta nicely. Add the chopped parsley more freshly grated pepper and drizzle some extra virgin olive oil on top to moisture your pasta.
Serve hot immediately with the whole (or half) lobsters and parmesan cheese on the side.
Let me know how this tasted my friends!