(Family Features) As people look to change what’s on their plates, it can be tough to know where to begin. From social media-inspired recipes to trendy menu offerings, there are many options.
That’s why restaurant owners Katie and Thom Werner are recommending a staple that’s sustainable, fresh and versatile: Lobster. The Werners own the popular Island Lobster Co. restaurant in Peaks Island, Maine where Thom works as a commercial fisherman and supplies most of the lobster served.
The Werner family is well versed in the iconic Maine Lobster fishery, coming from a long line of generational fishing families, with Thom having fished since he was 6 years old. They know lobster can be intimidating for home cooks, but as people familiar with the product, they emphasize lobster is easy to prep, delicious and supports communities up and down the coast.
“Lobsters are always sustainably harvested and handled with care by the fishery,” Katie said. “It’s so important to know where your food comes from and with local lobster, it’s something you can feel great about enjoying that also directly benefits so many families like ours.”
For those looking to enjoy a simple and classic version of lobster, the Werners recommend a tried and true method.
“Steamed with some melted butter is always perfect,” Thom said. “You can’t beat the sweet, succulent flavors of fresh lobster with that punch of salty butter."
For those looking for a fresh twist, Katie suggests trying her favorite recipe at Island Lobster Co.: the BLT Lobster Roll.
“It’s a savory and sweet combination of crispy bacon, juicy tomatoes and tender lobster meat, all served on a buttery roll,” she said. “It’s a great way to enjoy sustainable trap-to-table fare.”
No matter what recipe people go with, the Werner family hopes everyone can partake in enjoying a staple of their heritage.
“To me, Maine Lobster is a taste of home,” Thom said. “I’ve always enjoyed it with friends and family. Now I get to share that legacy with my own kids and our community at the restaurant. I feel incredibly lucky, and I hope everyone – whether you’re a Mainer or on the opposite side of the country – can enjoy it as a celebration of such an iconic industry.”
To learn more about the Werners’ story, find recipes and look for ways to support the industry, visit lobsterfrommaine.com.
BLT Lobster Roll
Recipe courtesy of the Werner family of Island Lobster Co. on behalf of the Maine Lobster Marketing Collaborative
Yield: 1 roll
- 3 slices bacon
- 1/4 pound fresh lobster meat (or meat from 1-pound lobster)
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1 brioche bun, halved
- 1 tablespoon mayonnaise
- 3 tomato slices
- 1 large leaf romaine lettuce or butter lettuce
- Preheat oven to 400 F. Line baking sheet with parchment paper and arrange bacon slices on top. Cook 10-15 minutes, or until desired crispiness.
- Prepare large pot with 2 inches of salted water and bring to rolling boil. Add lobster and steam 12 minutes. Halfway through, lift lid carefully and shift lobster to cook evenly.
- Break down lobster and remove meat from shell, yielding about 4 ounces of cooked meat. Chop meat into bite-size pieces.
- In large skillet or griddle over medium heat, warm butter to coat pan.
- Place both pieces of bun cut sides down on pan and cook about 30 seconds until golden. Remove buns from pan and set aside.
- In bowl, toss chopped lobster meat with mayonnaise and set aside.
- Assemble cooked bacon, tomato, lettuce and lobster mix on toasted bun.