Read The Laughing Chef's bio and previous columns


January 9, 2008

The Sweet Possibilities of Faux Lobster


Most of us understand that lobster is a treat to be enjoyed only on the most special of occasions. These days, however, with the magic of processed foods, every day can be a most special occasion, especially when something as mundane as a pollack is, through various processes too frightening to describe, turned sweet and like something recently swiped from the bottom of the ocean.


What the lobster shell protects it from, in terms of the kitchen, is anything other than a date with drawn butter. Removing it from the shell requires effort, too much effort to turn it into a pasta.

We start by sautéing a member of the onion family.


Choose here sweet on sweet, the sweeter and less pungent leek to complement the sweeter taste of the lobster. Later on, we will do something to make sure that the sweetness level of this dish doesn’t reach to heights that might suggest it be saved for dessert. 

Slice your leek very thin, nearly down to the molecular level. It should be nearly transparent, so that upon taking the next step it will transcend into near nothingness, a strand of onion-y goodness. 

To this, add a red pepper cut into thin strips. A nod in answer to the obvious question . . . yet again with the sweet. The red pepper is the sweetest of the non-hot peppers, and certainly not nearly as tangy as its green cousin. 

Once the leek and red pepper have softened in the oil and garlic, add the chunks of faux lobster. As they are heated, they will unravel into long strands. In fact, it is a sign that your dish is finished once the chunks have broken apart and have become long strands. 

It is now time to begin heating water for the pasta. As has happened so many times before, the equation hinges upon the law of pasta proportion. A pasta dish must feature either ingredients that resemble each other in appearance, or must be so completely different as to invoke the age-old law of Opposites Attract that works in everything from magnetism to human sexuality. 

For those unfamiliar with how this works, the answer is simple. The faux lobster has broken into strands, as has the leek. The red pepper was cut into strips and is now soft. In light of these, the proper pasta is linguine. 

Keep the faux lobster sauce covered and warming on a very low heat to keep it warm and moist, and as the pasta boils for its eight to 10 minutes, add a handful of spinach leaves to the sauce.  Make sure that the heat is very low and, if necessary, add a tablespoon of water to make sure it is moist. 

Drain the linguine, add it to the sauce, and stir it all together. Now, the exciting climax, how to combat the combination of sweet leek, sweet meat, sweet pepper? Add crushed red pepper, enough to add a healthy dose of heat. Transfer to a dish for eating, and if properly stirred, you will come to understand.  

© 2008 North Star Writers Group. May not be republished without permission.


Click here to talk to our writers and editors about this column and others in our discussion forum.


To e-mail feedback about this column, click here. If you enjoy this writer's work, please contact your local newspapers editors and ask them to carry it.

This is Column #TLC066. Request permission to publish here.

Op-Ed Writers
Eric Baerren
Lucia de Vernai
Herman Cain
Dan Calabrese
Alan Hurwitz
Paul Ibrahim
David Karki
Llewellyn King
Gregory D. Lee
David B. Livingstone
Nathaniel Shockey
Stephen Silver
Candace Talmadge
Jamie Weinstein
Feature Writers
Mike Ball
Bob Batz
The Laughing Chef
David J. Pollay
Business Writers
Cindy Droog
D.F. Krause