02 Feb2007


This is definitely an extravagant post. But it is also about one of the best sandwiches I have had in recent memory. When I was studying in Boston in the 1980’s, we sometimes sand3were lucky enough to eat a New England specialty (actually, mostly a Maine concoction) simply called lobster rolls. Odd-looking hotdogish-like rolls filled with a mayonnaise dressed lobster concoction. Actually, the best lobster rolls could be found at roadside shacks along the Maine seashore, I was told. A shrimp salad is a reasonable substitute, though the flavor and texture are notably different, and the kani (fake crabmeat sticks) sandwiches that are somewhat popular these days are a sorry relation. The sudden arrival of beautiful lobsters last night meant we had to consume them or cook them for later use. We cooked all the lobsters, and reserved lobster meat in the refrigerator for other uses. The next day, I made these sandwiches…


Chop up the meat of two, 1.5 pound lobsters, which should yield about 2-3 cups or so (1/2 inch cubes, roughly). Dice some peeled and de-seeded cucumber to yield sand3about 1.5 cups. You can also add 2-3 tablespoons of celery. In my version here, I put a little too much cucumber because I was trying to stretch the lobster. When you make it, try to weight it heavier towards lobster with cucumber more of a filler… Either make a mayonnaise from scratch, or use a good bottled mayonnaise that you flavor with some Dijon mustard, chopped tarragon (I used dill, which is all I had in the fridge), lemon juice, salt, pepper and a touch of Tabasco if you want a little zing. Mix this up really well and chill in the fridge for at least an hour before eating it. I served this lobster salad in a lightly toasted large croissant and it was delicious. For a moment, I felt like I was back in college, but it tasted even better than I remembered. A little later in the day, I spied a “Premium Toast Loaf” at Breadtalk at the mall and it looked like a richer, soft white bread, which I guessed would be rather similar to the rolls originally used in New England. So I tried another sandwich made with that bread and it was really good too. The distinct texture and flavor of lobster, moistened by the cucumber, punctuated with a little crispness from the fresh celery, married with a mayonnaise,mustard, lemon and dill dressing…ah, not only was this extravagant (probably PHP700 pesos per sandwich at COST, if I had purchased the crustaceans myself), but it was truly scrumptious! Recipe above good for 3 very large sandwiches or 4 medium sized ones. Serve with a green salad and it would make a great lunch.



  1. NYCMama says:

    MM, the rolls used for lobster rolls, are really hotdog buns! Purists will have nothing but hotdog buns. Fancy restaurants, esp in NY, will try for fancier bread like sourdough (to justify the steep price) but it just won’t cut it! Interesting note, don’t know if it was this way when you lived in Boston: the McDonald’s, as you near the Cape, serve lobster rolls! And they are not bad! You know you are near the cape when you see the McDonald’s with the lobster rolls.

    Feb 2, 2007 | 10:48 pm


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  3. sister says:

    Love lobster rolls, just lobster, mayo and a little chopped onion and celery… best ones on the Cape are at a little shack by the Bourne bridge.
    You must have gotten lobsters shipped by UPS via Minn. where they process and ship millions of lobsters for domestic and foreign use. Check the New Yorker for an article on it, maybe in 2005 0r 2006.

    Feb 3, 2007 | 12:53 am

  4. Maria Clara says:

    Lobster sandwich with all the work is truly delicious. The bread must be the soft bread type like hamburger/hot dog buns or croissant. Any crusty/chewy bread kills the taste – the crust of the bread masked and completely knocked down the lobster. I guess the soft bread goes well with the delicate texture of the lobster. Avocado is also great addition to the sandwich for another layer of creaminess.

    Feb 3, 2007 | 1:47 am

  5. wil-b cariaga says:

    i don’t know but croissant is sooo perfect for this kind of sandwich, it really is a good match. . .

    Feb 3, 2007 | 6:28 am

  6. millet says:

    when i was young, my dad had “suki” vendors from davao del norte who would bring baskets of spiny lobsters to his office. we would boil them all up just like you did, cut them up and make different lobster salads -mayo, avocado and cayenne pepper; mayo, onions and curry powder; mayo-blue cheese and walnuts (not good: the blue cheese overwhelms the lobster flavor – sayang ang blue cheese, sayang ang lobster)…they were all fabulous, but the all-time favorite was japanese mayo and celery. we also did mayo, cucumber and dill, but i generally don’t like cucumber in my salad though, as it tends to make the salad watery. MM, your posts always bring back delicious memories!

    Feb 3, 2007 | 8:07 am

  7. DivineG. says:

    That really looks and sounds delish. I will make it one of these days when I get all my ingredients. Can I use sandwich spread instead of just plain mayo?

    Feb 3, 2007 | 8:59 am

  8. Marilou says:

    We always have a lobster boil for Christmas eve. Ordered from Trenton Bridge Lobster Pound in Maine and timed for delivery just before Christmas Eve dinner.We eagerly wait for the Fedex delivery truck sometimes with the water already boiling! Only once has it failed to show up because of an ice storm. On Christmas morning I make lobster rolls with the leftovers for the long drive to my in-laws. Lobster omelets are yummy too. Or lobster chowder.

    Feb 3, 2007 | 9:24 am

  9. Luya says:

    MM, sarap! I like the lobster salad and croissant pairing. Diet? What Diet?

    Feb 3, 2007 | 9:44 am

  10. TOPING says:

    David Foster Wallace did a piece on the Maine Lobster Festival for Gourmet Magazine in 2004. A PDF copy of the article here:


    Feb 3, 2007 | 1:18 pm

  11. leira says:

    i love reading your blog.. even if im not a good cook.. i know a great blog when i see one and yours is amazing.Wow your lobster salad sandwich looks so good sa tingin pa lang parang nakakabusog na

    Feb 3, 2007 | 2:27 pm

  12. rina says:

    MM, i prefer the other version of the lobster roll where the lobster meat is simply bathed with melted butter in a hot bun….ooooh decadent….

    Feb 3, 2007 | 2:28 pm

  13. Marketman says:

    rina, omigosh, I have not had that version but I can just imagine how incredibly rich and decadent it would be. I would used a toasted brioche for that version… yum. leira, thanks… maslalong nakakabusog kung dalawa ang kainin mo! As I did in one day… :) TOPING, yes, I recall reading that article in the magazine but thanks for the link; I’m sure other readers who are curious will enjoy reading the article. Luya, heehee, diet it was definitely not. But if you are trying to be silly, use low fat mayonnaise and just doctor it a bit with the mustard, lemon, etc. Marilou, gosh that sounds REALLY good. DivineG, if you are going to use real lobsters, don’t use sandwich spread…just make sure you have the best mayo and add the mustard, herbs, etc. to make it more flavorful! Millet, I worried about water content of the cucumber too but if you finely chop the cucumber and let it sit in a colander for at least 1 hour, a lot of the moisture is removed. Wil-b, yes croissant has the buttery perfection that goes with the sweet lobster meat – excellent match. Sister, amazing how no food is now more than say 24-36 hours away from you if customs and budget allows… NYCMama, yes the rolls are very similar, but the ones I recall were cooked upright stuck next to each other. So when the roll is ripped off, the sides look like hotdog buns whose crust has been sheared off…

    Feb 3, 2007 | 2:43 pm

  14. perkycinderella says:


    This is one of our special fare in the hotel where I work here in Boston. Tried this sandwich in 3 different joints in Maine, but the one in Portland is to my taste…the best! The taste is SUBLIME!

    Feb 3, 2007 | 10:25 pm

  15. Ana says:

    mmmm. i love seafood. though lobsters are rare in manila. save from having them flown in, do you know anywhere i can buy one fresh? otherwise, even frozen ones, i don’t know where to get them from.

    Feb 4, 2007 | 2:57 am

  16. Marketman says:

    Ana, they have both live spiny lobsters alive in tanks and recently deceased spiny lobsters at the Seaside Mart in Baclaran. You can also get what I call mud lobsters at the same market. I suspect Farmer’s market in Cubao would also have them. I would be wary of the frozen ones, I haven’t had much luck with them, but some of the upscale groceries such as rustan’s and unimart sometimes carry them. Perkycinderella, if you are in Boston, eat some fried dough for me…thanks!

    Feb 4, 2007 | 8:08 am

  17. teny says:

    MM can I use dried tarragon? Aside from cucumber can you use a thin slice of apple?

    Feb 4, 2007 | 8:16 am

  18. Marketman says:

    teny, I suppose dried tarragon might work, just don’t put too much of it. Although I do prefer fresh herbs with this dish since the lobster is rather delicate and sweet. I am not sure about the apple but it’s worth a try on a small portion of the dish you are mixing up…

    Feb 4, 2007 | 8:22 am

  19. Mandy says:

    oh my 700 at cost? very dear sanwich. but it looks really good!! you only live once right? :) heehee. the rock lobsters, sometimes i’d spy them at the seafood section of shopwise. and my dad was able to buy also at the imelda seafood market beside dampa at paranaque.

    Feb 4, 2007 | 10:15 pm

  20. NYCMama says:

    MM, I know what you mean by “hotdog buns with the sides sheared off” because that is exactly it — the hotdog buns were made with the opening on top, instead of the sides! But that kind of hotdog bun is hard to find outside of Northern New England, so puede na the hotdog buns.

    Feb 5, 2007 | 12:09 pm


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