Lobster Newburg

  • 1/2 pound mushrooms
  • About 1/4 cup dry sherry or dry madeira
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped shallots
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • About 2 tablespoons butter or margarine
  • 1/4 cup whipping cream
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1/2 cup fat-skimmed chicken broth
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 2 slices white bread (about 2 oz. total), toasted and crusts trimmed
  • 2 cooked and shelled Maine lobsters (1 1/2 lb. each) or 2 spiny (rock) lobster tails (about 6 oz. each); directions follow
  • About 1 cup watercress sprigs, rinsed and crisped
  • Rinse and drain mushrooms; trim and discard discolored stem ends. Thinly slice mushrooms and put in a 10- to 12-inch frying pan. Add 1/4 cup sherry, shallots, lemon juice, and 2 tablespoons butter. Stir often over high heat until juices evaporate, about 10 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, in a small, deep bowl, whip cream until it holds soft peaks. Flavor to taste with salt, pepper, and about 1 tablespoon sherry. If making up to 2 hours ahead, cover and chill.
  • In another small bowl, mix broth and cornstarch. Add to mushroom mixture and stir until boiling, about 1 minute; if making up to 2 hours ahead, remove from heat and let stand.
  • Butter toast, if desired, and set on dinner plates; lay lobster tail shells, cupped sides up, beside toast (if using Maine lobster, also garnish plates with body shells). Arrange a cluster of watercress sprigs on each plate.
  • Cut lobster tail meat into 1/2-inch chunks. Add tail and leg meat and about half the flavored whipped cream to mushroom mixture; stir over medium-high heat until boiling, 2 to 3 minutes (3 to 4 minutes if chilled). Quickly spoon mixture into tail shells and onto toast. Spoon remaining whipped cream onto lobster mixture; if available, lay claw meat on cream.


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